[Athen] NFB and Penn State resolve U.S. Dept. of Justice civil rights complaint

Laurie Vasquez Vasquez at sbcc.edu
Tue Oct 11 10:59:13 PDT 2011


The National Federation of the Blind (NFB) and Pennsylvania State
University announced today the resolution of the NFB's civil rights
complaint lodged with the U.S. Department of Justice against the
university for its alleged failure to provide an appropriately
accessible technology environment for students who are visually

As stated in the NFB press release on the agreement, it commits the
university to continued implementation of "a strategy to make all
electronic and information technology systems used on its campuses fully
accessible to blind students, faculty, and staff. The information
technology systems covered include course management systems, Web sites,
classroom technology, library resources, banking services, and more." Of
particular note, Penn State's spokerperson references the university's
plans to work with the companies that provide it with technology goods
and services "to see if their products and procedures can be adjusted to
meet the needs of our students."

Key components of the agreement include Penn State*s commitment to:

* Conduct a full accessibility audit of its complete technology
environment in relation to the visually impaired by February 15, 2012
* Establish an Electronic and Information Technology (EIT) Policy
Statement to guide the development of its accessibility strategy, with
procedures to fully implement the policy *across all disciplines*
developed by May 30, 2012
* Implement institution-wide *training, instruction, and
support* on the EIT Accessibility Policy and procedures by August
15, 2012
* **develop and institute procedures that require the University
to purchase or recommend only EITs that will provide the same programs,
benefits, and services that they do to individuals without disabilities,
except that when it is technically unfeasible to do so,** by October
15, 2102

The full text of the Penn State - NFB agreement is provided below.


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