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

Ron Stewart ron at ahead.org
Tue Oct 11 12:51:41 PDT 2011

Unfortunately while progress this settlement reflects once again a partial
agreement to benefit one class of individuals with disabilities, and most
likely at the expense of other classes.

Ron Stewart

-----Original Message-----
From: athen-list-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu
[mailto:athen-list-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu] On Behalf Of Laurie
Sent: Tuesday, October 11, 2011 10:59 AM
To: athen-list at u.washington.edu
Subject: [Athen] NFB and Penn State resolve U.S. Dept. of Justice civil
rights complaint


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 impaired.

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

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,

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


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