New App Makes Library Accessible to Those With Disabilities

The Naperville Public Library recently launched an app to make their spaces more accessible to those with disabilities.

What Does The APP Do?

Their new Sensory NPL app will help customers with autism spectrum disorder, or other sensory disabilities. Detailed maps of each building and voice-guided library overviews let the user plan their trip and find whatever they’re looking for.

Why Is It Helpful?

It’s especially helpful for those who’d like to find a low-key area of the library and avoid having sensory overload and distress from of busy areas like the children’s section.

“When you see someone who has this getting agitated, the best thing to do is guide them to a spot where maybe it’s a little bit quieter,” said Ellen Fitzgerald Children’s Services Supervisor at the NPL. “maybe there’s less sensory information going on and they can calm down and collect themselves. In that moment they’re going through a lot and they’re in pain.”

The app is inclusive, allowing for fonts to be changed to open dyslexic, for those with dyslexia, and also allows for non-verbal visitors to communicate with library staff.

“We want to be able to have a relationship with everyone who walks in and obviously communication is the biggest barrier between that,” said Fitzgerald. “If we can close that barrier even a little bit through this app then that’s a wonderful thing.”

Available Now

The app is available at every Naperville Public Library and you can also download it on your phone.

Naperville News 17’s Christian Canizal reports.

 

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