A one-stop technology show for the visually impaired

  • A computer programme that reads or spells out loud what ever is on a computer screen.
  • A portable note-taker with a mega-memory and a Braille keyboard.
  • Scanners that help in getting text from pages to a voice version.
  • Specialist tape recorders that change the speed, pitch and tone of voice.
  • CCTV readers which provide access for partially sighted people

The Open University and the Bucks Association for the Blind (BAB) are expecting hundreds of visually-impaired people from the region at a one-stop, hands-on event showing the latest technology to help them. They will have a chance to use the technology, and look at how it can help them overcome barriers in education or in the workplace. Advice will also be available on how government grants can help them own the technology.

“Too often people with disabilities feel there are barriers to them getting into higher education or getting a better job,” says DerekChild, OU Policy Adviser (Equality and Disability). “We have about 1,200 visually-impaired students at the Open University and this is one way to demonstrate to other visually-impaired people just what can be accomplished with the technology available today.

There are no barriers at the Open University.”High-tech or low-tech, it will be at the Open University Milton Keynes on Monday 10 May 2004 from 10am-3pm at the Old Lecture Theatre. Exhibitors include: Age Concern, Centre for Integrated Living, MK Library Service, Pensions/Benefits–Department for Work and pensions, Job Centre Plus, Assist, OU Access Centre and the MK Reader Service.

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