Summary of 2011 Resolutions

Note: This publication reflects only those resolutions which were adopted by the convention. Resolutions which were referred to other ACB entities for further consideration, tabled or withdrawn are not included in this document.

Resolution 2011-01 confirms ACB's support for an international treaty on copyright exceptions and limitations that will allow producers of books for people with print reading disabilities to share them with individuals in other countries. It was sent to the World Blind Union to be distributed by them to such individuals and entities as may be appropriate to support their efforts on behalf of an international copyright treaty.

Resolution 2011-03 directs ACB's environmental access committee, with the assistance of ACB directors, officers and staff, to contact relevant public and private agencies, organizations and academic institutions with relevant expertise, jurisdiction or mission to convene meetings and hold discussions regarding the most appropriate means and methodologies for researching and compiling data concerning the environmental factors contributing to or causing the injury or death of blind and visually impaired pedestrians. ACB will work with the environmental access committee to develop and implement a strategy that will lead to achievement of the objectives of this resolution.

Resolution 2011-04 directs ACB and the Braille Revival League to request the Braille Authority of North America (BANA) to provide a clear and unequivocal indication of where BANA stands with regard to the adoption of both of these codes in the United States to the board of directors by its mid-year meeting in Washington, DC in February of 2012.

Resolution 2011-05 directs ACB to work with all relevant federal agencies, most specifically, the Food and Drug Administration, to develop guidelines and implement regulations requiring the provision of braille labeling.

Resolution 2011-06 urges the Access Board to include in its proposed specifications for detectable warnings all of the following elements: 70 percent clear visual contrast from the adjoining walking surface, federal yellow, resiliency and/or sound difference on cane contact from the adjoining walking surface, the alignment of truncated domes on a square grid, and a depth of 36 inches of detectable warning surface in order to ensure detectability. It also directs ACB's environmental access committee to provide public comments on the guidelines once they are released which will clearly articulate the position outlined in this resolution.

Resolution 2011-07 calls upon all members of the U.S. House of Representatives to co-sponsor H.R. 860, and requests that members of the U.S. Senate promptly introduce and pass companion legislation to H.R. 860 and work with the House of Representatives to get the legislation to the President's desk as soon as possible.

Resolution 2011-09 directs ACB staff to contact the Transportation Security Administration in writing to praise this effort and encourage continued education of airport personnel. It also instructs local ACB and GDUI chapters and affiliates, in collaboration with ACB's national office and GDUI, to work together to provide consultation to individual airports in addition to the aforementioned education as airports design and implement relief areas using the new TSA recommendations.

Resolution 2011-10 directs ACB to call upon the Secretary of Health and Human Services to use all regulatory and enforcement mechanisms at her disposal to ensure that electronic medical records, telehealth technologies, and health exchange and other related web sites are fully accessible to and usable by people with disabilities.

Resolution 2011-11 instructs ACB to strongly encourage IDE developers to ensure programmers who are blind or visually impaired can access all portions of the development environment with the same rapidity and fluidity as their sighted peers. Officers, directors, and staff are directed to develop a list of resources which could be used to provide information on making IDEs fully accessible, as well as to consult with organizations or individuals involved in creating development environments to ensure that the final product is fully accessible to programmers who are blind or visually impaired at the same time as it is made available to the general market.

Resolution 2011-12 commits ACB to advocacy leading to the prompt enactment of federal legislation requiring pharmacies to offer, upon request, access to prescription drug labeling and accompanying information. Such legislation should mandate the promulgation of regulations describing the variety of means necessary to meet the non-visual and enhanced visual access needs of customers with vision loss.

Resolution 2011-13 puts ACB, along with the Randolph-Sheppard Vendors of America (RSVA), on record as reaffirming the historic significance of the Randolph-Sheppard Act. ACB will work toward the realization of the full potential of this program for the employment of blind and low-vision Americans.

Resolution 2011-14 instructs ACB to call upon U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to take all steps necessary to update and issue policy guidance concerning the education of students with vision loss, to publish such guidance in the Federal Register no later than the close of calendar year 2012, and to set the DoEd on a course to regularly update such guidance thereafter. It also directs the Department of Education to work with the American Council of the Blind, the American Foundation for the Blind, and similar parties with whom these organizations may make common cause, to ensure that, at a minimum, future policy guidance thoroughly addresses: students' rights to accessible instructional materials and states' and schools' obligations to offer accessible materials and technologies; a clear statement of states' and schools' obligation to provide assistive technology and the services necessary to use it properly, and clarification that such technology may be used in the student's home or otherwise outside of the classroom; the enforcement and other means open to students, parents, teachers and other advocates to ensure that students with vision loss receive instruction in braille as appropriate; a straightforward description of the criteria that should be used to determine when the establishment of an individualized education program (IEP) or a so-called 504 plan is warranted for a given student with vision loss; a statement affirming the role of the teacher of students with visual impairments as the indispensable professional necessary to the appropriate receipt of special education for a student with vision loss; practical examples of draft goals which might be incorporated in IEPs to achieve specific outcomes; clarification that IDEA's so-called least restrictive environment expectation cannot be used to thwart the provision of services meeting the unique needs of students with vision loss simply because such appropriate services happen to be readily available at special schools or in center-based settings; and the full appropriate availability of educational placements along a continuum of options, including specialized schools.

Resolution 2011-15 directs ACB to advocate for the prompt enactment of federal legislation to vacate the CMS regulation barring coverage for all low-vision devices employing lenses and to establish clear coverage criteria for the fullest possible Medicare reimbursement for low-vision devices.

Resolution 2011-16 directs ACB's national staff to contact both the U.S. Access Board and the U.S. Department of Justice to emphasize the pressing need to revise the 2010 ADA Standard for Accessible Design or take other actions to require installation of detectable warning surfaces at curb ramps, blended transitions, roadway medians, islands, and roundabout splitter islands and low-slope blended transitions to crossings and other components of pedestrian networks found at or within public accommodations and commercial facilities. It also requests that ACB's national staff and all ACB affiliates and members support this vital initiative by providing written public comment to the US Access Board in response to its Notice of Proposed Rule-Making on Public Rights-of-Way emphasizing the need for requiring installation of detectable warning surfaces in the public right of way as well as at or within places of public accommodations and commercial facilities.

Resolution 2011-17 directs ACB to demand that Netflix take immediate steps to create accessible experiences for people who are blind or visually impaired on each of the platforms used by Netflix to distribute video content by following recognized guidelines for making interfaces accessible. It also demands that Netflix design and implement a system through which blind or visually impaired people can have access to commercially available video described content via all the distribution channels used by Netflix, and states that ACB's officers, directors, and staff will take all appropriate steps to work with Netflix's management to implement the outcomes of this resolution. ACB will make available the assistance of ACB's Information Access Committee to assist Netflix in meeting its obligations to provide equal accessibility to people who are blind or have low vision.

Resolution 2011-18 puts ACB on record as remaining committed to the promotion of privacy, verifiability, independence, and security as indispensable elements of any new voting system being considered. It requests that whatever new system is being considered for adoption in any jurisdiction be secure, verifiable, and must allow for independent voting in privacy. ACB encourages universities, vendors and other public entities to continue to seek innovative approaches that will create systems that meet all the criteria as set forth in this resolution.

Resolution 2011-19 strongly encourages Apple to take the following steps to give iOS app developers incentive to make their apps fully accessible: 1) Create a rating system that provides a consistent method of measuring the accessibility of apps which could be applied across all iOS apps; 2) Create a category of accessible apps in the iOS App Store that would make the discoverability of accessible apps easier and that would highlight app developers who have made concerted efforts to achieve accessibility; 3) Create a specific category for accessibility to be used when Apple awards app developers for "best of" design; and 4) Take additional steps to make available tools and documentation to developers whose apps are currently not accessible. It directs ACB to take all appropriate steps to work with Apple's management to implement the outcomes of this resolution, and to make available to Apple the assistance of the ACB Information Access Committee.

Resolution 2011-20 directs ACB to urge Congress and the Rehabilitation Services Administration to work with states to ensure that rehabilitation services are provided to eligible citizen without delay. ACB's officers, directors, staff, and members will urge Congress to maintain enough funding to state rehabilitation programs so that disabled, and especially blind and visually impaired, citizens are fully prepared for jobs commensurate with their knowledge, education, and experience. It requests the officers, staff, and the rehabilitation issues task force to work with affiliates in advocating with their state legislatures to provide sufficient state funding to draw down all potentially available federal funds.

Resolution 2011-21 urges that conventional incandescent light bulbs of all wattages continue to be available while manufacturers and researchers work on producing a light source that uses less electricity while retaining the same lighting characteristics as incandescent bulbs. It also puts ACB on record as supporting legislation such as S. 395, and encourages that S. 395 be amended to specifically address the need for development of a lighting source that will meet both the needs of people who have low vision, and address general environmental concerns.

Resolution 2011-23 commends the John Ascuaga Nugget Hotel Resort and Casino for the services and accommodations it provided to ACB members during the conference and convention.

Resolution 2011-24 commends the local host committee and the Nevada Council of the Blind for their fine work.

Resolution 2011-25 thanks the volunteers who worked at the conference and convention for their assistance.