Assistive Services

We make EPL easy to use for everyone.

Assistive Services
EPL responds to the diverse needs of our customers with special services and adaptive technologies that help provide services to persons with disabilities, home bound individuals and older adults.

Contact us to learn more by phoning Stanley A. Milner Library at 780.496.7000 or by contacting your local branch.

Volunteers are essential to making our assistive services possible. Interested in Volunteering?

Home Service

If you're unable to come to us for over three months, we'll come to you. EPL provides home service where you live – whether that's an extended care facility, a seniors' lodge or your own home.

We'll match you with a carefully screened and trained volunteer who will deliver materials selected by staff directly to you.

Book-cart service is provided regularly to most extended care facilities and seniors' lodges through the city.

To register for home service, call your local branch.

Assistive Materials

  • Large Print Books which include hardcover and lightweight softcover books. These are available at all Library locations with the largest selection housed at the downtown library. 
    Search for Large Print Books    
  • DAISY Books are digital talking books used by blind and visually impaired customers and played on a special player. DAISY books can only be requested via EPL staff. Staff at any EPL location would be happy to place a hold on these items for you!
  • Children's Braille Books have arrived with over 250 titles of kid's favorite authors to choose from. Educational tools include Braille Phonics for Kindergarten to Grade 2 and a Braille Dictionary. 
    Search for Children's Braille     
  • Descriptive Videos/DVDs (DVS) are movies which describe the visual elements for people who are blind or have low vision. Click here for Descriptive Video/DVD list
  • CELA - The Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA) is a new service that is available through EPL that provides reading materials in accessible formats to patrons with print disabilities.Access to the CELA collection is available to people who are unable to read conventional print due to a disability, which includes:

    - Learning disability: an impairment relating to comprehension

    - Physical disability: the inability to hold or manipulate a book

    - Visual disability: severe or total impairment of sight or the inability to focus or move one's eyes.

    Access to the CELA collection is offered in a number of different ways, including direct downloads and delivery by mail to your home. To sign up for CELA, contact Katie Turzansky at 780-496-1054.The CELA website can be found at: www.celalibrary.ca

Assistive Technologies

Assistive technology is any piece of equipment that eliminates or diminishes barriers to information and maximizes independence. The following assistive technology is available to the public at the locations specified.

  • Closed Circuit Televisions (CCTVs): A CCTV permits readers to enlarge and enhance printed text or photos. These are located in the following branches: Stanley A. Milner, Whitemud Crossing, Londonderry, Mill Woods, Jasper Place, Castledowns, Capilano, Woodcroft, and Strathcona.
  • Hand-held magnifiers: Magnifying glasses for in-library use are available in most library branches.
  • Hand-held digital magnifiers: 2 hand-held NEMO digital magnifiers are available Stanley A. Milner Library, 1st floor.
  • Reading Machine: A SARA reader scans print and reads it aloud. Available at Stanley A. Milner Library, 1st floor.
  • Oversized monitors and large-print keyboards are available in many branches

LEAP (Library Equal Access Program) Computer Workstation

The LEAP station, available at the Stanley A. Milner Library, 1st floor, combines hardware, software and equipment for customers with special visual, learning or physical needs. Staff is available to provide a basic orientation on how to use this equipment. Please call 780.496.7000 for more information and to reserve time.

  • Motorized Furniture: The workstation can be adjusted to accommodate a variety of physical needs. It is wide enough to accommodate wheelchairs of any size and is height adjustable from sitting to standing.
  • Alternate Keyboards: Provides access for customers with physical, visual, or cognitive disabilities who have difficulty using a standard keyboard.
  • Head Mouse and Alternate Mice: Make it possible for people who have controlled head movement and lacking fine motor skills to use a computer with an onscreen keyboard.
  • Screen Magnification Software: Increases the size of text on the computer screen and allows the user to change the screen colours/contrast.
  • Screen Reading Software: Reads aloud the content of the computer screen.
  • Refreshable Braille Display: Converts text off the screen into a Braille display.
  • Braille Printer: Embosses Braille onto card stock paper.
  • Optical Character Recognition Scanner: Information in print-only can be scanned, displayed and read aloud.
  • Word Prediction Software: Assists in preparing written documents by signaling spelling problems and giving word suggestions to make reading and writing easier for people with learning disabilities, literacy challenges or learning English as a Second Language.
  • Voice-Operated Dictation Software: Using a microphone and headset and simple voice commands, customers can instruct the computer to create documents, send and receive e-mail and explore the Internet.

Communication Boards

General Services and Programs

The following EPL services and programs may be of interest to persons with disabilities.

  • Extended Loans These may be arranged at all Library locations, although there may be limitations on extended loans for materials in particularly high demand.
  • Audiovisual Materials A wide variety of CDs, DVDs and games are available at all Library locations.