USA: Tongue Piercing Controls Wheelchair
Body piercings have been used to control wheelchairs and computers in a move scientists believe could transform the way people interact with the world after paralysis. The movement of a tiny magnet in a tongue piercing is detected by sensors and converted into commands, which can control a range of devices. The US team said it was harnessing the tongue's "amazing" deftness. The development is reported in the journal Science Translational Medicine. The team at the Georgia Institute of Technology made the unlikely leap from body art to wheelchairs because the tongue is so spectacularly supple.
From http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-25118896, November 28, 2013
Taiwan: Disability Rights Advocates Urge Government to Adopt UN CRPD
The League of Welfare Organizations for the Disabled and 10 other groups representing people with disabilities yesterday urged the legislature to adopt the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), which was adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2006 and entered into force in 2008.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2013/11/25/disability-rights-advocates-urge-government-to-adopt-un-crpd/, November 27, 2013
The Paciello Group Web Accessibility Challenge
The 7th “Web Accessibility Challenge” is your opportunity to showcase advanced Web and Mobile technologies to technical leaders from academia and industry. The main goal of the Challenge is to encourage and accelerate the development of innovative and usable technologies, as well as provide feedback from end-users and experts in the field. The Challenge is where experimental systems and technologies are compared and evaluated both by the delegates and an independent panel of judges to identify the most significant advances in accessibility research that year.
From http://www.w4a.info/2014/submissions/challenge/, November 26, 2013
USA: Project to Improve Web and Cloud Computing Accessibility
The U.S. Department of Education is sponsoring a five-year, $3.7 million project led by Carnegie Mellon University to develop methods that enable people with disabilities to take full advantage of the resources available on the Internet. The Disability Rehabilitation Research Project (DRRP) on Inclusive Cloud and Web Computing includes researchers at Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies (iSchool) and the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC). “Our projects are focused on finding ways to create inclusive user experiences on the Internet,” said Aaron Steinfeld, the team director and an associate research professor at Carnegie Mellon’s Robotics Institute. “There has been great progress over the years on Web accessibility standards and systems, but there is still a lot of work left to do.”
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2013/11/26/project-to-improve-web-and-cloud-computing-accessibility/, November 26, 2013
Ghana: Minister Calls for Amendment of Disability Act
Nana Oye Lithur, Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection has called for amendment of the Disability Act 2006 to conform to international obligations under the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. She said the amendment would also ensure that the needs of Ghanaians with disabilities were addressed in accordance with the new mandate given to the Gender Ministry. Nana Oye made this call on Monday during the inauguration of the National Council on Persons with Disability. She charged the Council to develop modalities for raising funds to facilities its activities. She said the Council was mandated to pursue and promote a better Ghana experience for the estimated 20 per cent of the nation’s population with disabilities.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2013/11/26/minister-calls-for-amendment-of-disability-act/, November 26, 2013
Braille Newspaper Launched in Namibia
New Era Publication Corporation on Friday witnessed a new dawn of inclusiveness when it launched Namibia’s first weekly Braille newspaper. Published courtesy of the New Era newspaper’s content, the Braille weekly is produced and translated at the Namibia Federation for the Visually Impaired (NFVI) using that organization resources. Speaking at the launch held at the New Era head offices in Windhoek, Daniel Trum, the National Coordinator of the NFVI said people with vision disabilities generally do not have much access to technology and reading material.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2013/11/25/braille-newspaper-launched-in-namibia/, November 26, 2013
Meeting to Promote Disability-Inclusive Development Agenda
UNESCO will be hosting the 8th meeting of the UN Inter-Agency Support Group for the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (IASG) at its Headquarters in Paris from 25 to 26 November 2013. IASG, which has two chairs – the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (UN OHCHR) – and one yearly co-rotating chair, has also previously been ensured by UNICEF, ILO, the World Bank and other Agencies.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2013/11/25/meeting-to-promote-disability-inclusive-development-agenda/, November 26, 2013
Day of the African Child: Urgent Action for Children With Disabilities
The Day of the African Child (DAC) is commemorated every year on 16 June by Member States of the African Union. This occasion is firstly a commemoration to recall the 1976 uprisings in Soweto, when a protest by school children in South Africa against apartheid-inspired education resulted in the public killing of these unarmed young protesters by police officials. But every year there is also a special theme chosen, related to the children of today across Africa. This year’s 22nd Day of the African Child commemoration theme is “The Rights of Children with Disabilities: The Duty to Protect, Respect, Promote and Fulfil.”
From https://www.repssi.org/day-of-the-african-child-urgent-action-for-children-with-disabilities/, November 25, 2013
Sudan Unveils National Education Strategy for Children with Disabilities
Sudan’s ministry of education this week launched a three-year national strategy aimed at providing better quality education for children with disabilities. In a statement, UNICEF welcomed the initiative, saying it was the first of its kind in Sudan, offering a comprehensive take on the issues and challenges affecting children with disabilities in the Sudanese school system and setting out a broad range of responses to gradually address the needs of these children.
From http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article48905, November 25, 2013
USA: Department of Defense Backs UN Disability Treaty
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Eric Shinseki, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, said a UN treaty requiring signatory nations to improve services and accessibility to the disabled is good for American troops and its disabled veterans. In separate statements submitted to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Thursday, the two combat-wounded Vietnam veterans urged the Senate to ratify the treaty. The agreement has broad support from veterans' organizations, but is viewed with suspicion by some conservative groups who believe it could be used to alter American law regarding decisions about children's health -- especially with respect to birth control and abortion -- and home-schooling.
From http://www.military.com/daily-news/2013/11/21/dod-va-back-un-disability-treaty.html, November 25, 2013