Luisterpuntbibliotheek - Flemish library serving persons with print disabilities
The Flemish library serving persons with print disabilities is a public library, which lends books in an adapted form - Daisy and braille - to those who are blind or visually impaired and to other persons who are print disabled.
Its goal lies in delivering books in an adapted form to all persons who are not able to read conventionally printed books. Blind persons, visually impaired elderly persons, persons who are bedridden or have a disorder of muscles or joints, children wirh dyslexia and all those who are unable to read or have difficulties reading a printed book, can contact Luisterpunt.
Our books are available in two special formats: Daisy audio books and braille books.
For the moment the collection includes almost 50.000 Daisy books (these are audio books) and 19.000 braille books. The complete collection of books can be consulted in our on line catalogue: https://daisybraille.bibliotheek.be.
To reach the special target group of print-impaired persons Luisterpuntbibliotheek works as an online and as a mailing library. This means that we send the books in an adapted package to our readers home. Afterwards the reader sends the Audio books back in the same package. The reader can also choose to read Daisy books online. Braille Books are printed on demand and don't have to be returned.
Becoming a member of the library and lending books is free of charge, as are the postal services and the use of the app.
Schools, homes for elderly people, public libraries and other institutions can also get a Daisy collection of audio books for free. For the moment + 90% of all the Flemish public libraries in Flanders and Brussels work with Daisy books and lend out Daisy players.
These organisations can also add online readers within their accounts.
The Flemish library serving persons with print disabilities is a specialised public library, which receives grants from the Flemish Government.
Luisterpunt is situated in Brussels (Broekstraat 49-53, 1000 Brussels). As mentioned Luisterpunt works as an online library and a mailing library. Daily postal bags with Daisy books and braille books are sent to our readers in Flanders and Brussels.
Communication and promotion
To promote our library and our unique service to the target groups, we participate at all kind of fairs and initiatives that are held by different organisations who work for those different target groups.
Moreover we organise our own campaigns. For those promotion campaigns we work with a lot of strategic partners and stakeholders.
For children and youngsters with dyslexia, their parents, teachers, speech therapists and (school) librarians, we launched the campaign 'I hate reading', www.ikhaatlezen.be.
IFLA (International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions) - LPD
Statement from section LPD: Section for Libraries Serving Persons with Print Disabilities
[Revised 15th May, 2016]
The members of IFLA's Section for Libraries Serving Persons with Print Disabilities, comprising 80 library organisations, also represent the views of many other organisations such as schools, transcribers, software and hardware producers, providers and brokers that distribute accessible reading materials to persons with print disabilities. We acknowledge with appreciation the WIPO Member States' agreement to create an effective Treaty at the Diplomatic Conference held in Marrakesh in June 2013. This will deliver tangible benefits to more than 285 million visually impaired or otherwise print disabled people who have been deprived for too long from equitable access to reading materials and information.
The full text of the Marrakesh treaty in print, audio, Daisy, and Braille formats can be accessed here: https://www.wipo.int/treaties/en/ip/marrakesh/.
It is only through access to reading that people can participate in education, work, culture and civic activity, and so improve the quality and wellbeing of their lives. The Book Famine, that has been caused in large part by international copyright constraints, has the result that print disabled people are deprived of the opportunity to read the same book, at the same price, and at the same time as the rest of the world. Libraries and other voluntary sector providers of books in accessible formats around the world waste scarce resources because they have had to duplicate transcription and production efforts.
At long last there is a real chance to overcome the shortage of accessible reading and information by using internet delivery and increasing ways of reading the growing quantity of digital content.
By strengthening the international copyright framework, this Treaty provides a unique and truly historic opportunity for Member States and involved parties to attack the book famine and to dramatically improve the life opportunities of more than 285 million print disabled people.
Some concrete examples of benefits that will be delivered with the help of the Treaty are as follows. The Treaty will
- Meet increasing demand for accessible works to be made available between countries/communities that share a language, e.g. Spanish, French, Arabic, Chinese, English to name but a few.
- Support developing economies who cannot afford to produce resources but could particularly benefit from greater access to resources made elsewhere in the world
- Help print-disabled refugees, immigrants and other diaspora who need to access content made elsewhere, in the context of greater mobility around the world
- Protect the interests of rights holders by having a clear framework in place
- Increase the overall amount of accessible books and information and the timeliness of publication
- Empower people individually to become more effective members of society together with the result of reducing poverty, unemployment and crime
These benefits transcend the technicalities and subtleties of judicial debate. The urgent needs of all the world’s print disabled people are at risk because of undue focus on legislative details.
We also refer to the Guide for libraries (https://www.eifl.net/resources/marrakesh-treaty-eifl-guide-libraries) of EIFL (Electronic Information for Libraries, a not-for-profit organisation), who is supporting ratification of the treaty and implementation into national copyright law.
We call upon Member States and the involved parties to stay focused on the necessary benefits and outcomes.
As Government, Ministers, Parliamentarians, educationalists, leaders of business and of local communities, please campaign for the early ratification by your Government of this effective Treaty that will improve the lives of all the visually impaired and print disabled people in your country, leading to a more equitable and non-discriminatory society.
Chair of IFLA section for Libraries for the Print Disabled (LPD)