Accessibility at the Library

Barrie Public Library is committed to meeting the needs of people with disabilities by preventing and removing barriers to accessibility and by meeting the accessibility requirements under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA) and the City of Barrie’s Accessibility Plan.

Accessible Building Features

  • Our Downtown Branch has a button-operated passenger elevator. Our Painswick Branch is all one level.
  • Most book drops are accessible height.
  • Distance between most book shelves in both branches accommodates minimum aisle widths per accessibility standards.
  • Service desks are accessible to persons who use a wheelchair or scooter. Chairs are available for patrons to use at all service desks.
  • Both branches have automatic sliding doors and are wheelchair accessible.
  • Both branches have accessible washrooms.
  • Self-check stations are wheelchair accessible.
  • Persons with disabilities are welcomed to use personal assistive devices, registered service animals and/or support persons in the library.

Accessible Formats

Many of the resources available at Barrie Public Library are suited to accessibility needs:

  • Audiobooks (books on CD)
  • eAudiobooks and eBooks (downloadable): text size can be adjusted with the majority of our downloadable eBooks
  • DAISY books (audiobooks played with a DAISY reader) are available at our Downtown Branch to patrons who cannot use print materials. Patrons must either self-declare and register with Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA), or have a current CNIB card. Library staff can help patrons register in person or by telephone.
  • Large print books
  • Accessible Book Club Kit sets are available.  Each set includes 15 copies of the book as follows: 10 regular print, 3 large print, 2 Audiobooks, as well as criticism and question sheets. See the Special Collections page for details.
  • Adult basic literacy books
  • Many DVDs and Blu-rays have a subtitle option
  • Descriptive DVDs
  • Many of our databases provide text to speech capability such as EBSCO, Gale, PebbleGo, and TumbleBooks.

Physical formats of any of the above items can be picked up from either branch, or may be delivered using our Visiting Library Service.

Information Access

  • Account information is available in person, over the telephone and online.
  • Notification about holds pick up, overdue items and due date reminders are available via telephone, email notification or text notification.
  • Our Visiting Library Service is available for patrons who cannot visit the library.
  • ASL interpretation is available for some adult programs with advance notice.

Website Features

  • Patrons are free to choose large font or zoom in and out to view the site in a size comfortable to their viewing.
  • Text equivalents are used for images to facilitate those using screen readers.
  • Style sheets are used to separate the document structure from presentation.
  • Device-independent interaction with the website is allowed: use a mouse, keyboard, or touch screen device.
  • Moving content can be stopped by users.

Accessible Equipment

  • Accessible computers are available at both branches and feature large monitors and the option to use an accessible mouse, keyboard, or joystick. The computers come equipped with ZoomText and Kurzweil at both branches, and Magic and Jaws at the Downtown Branch. These accessible computers are on adjustable tables for those using wheelchairs and scooters.
  • Our CCTV (print enlarging machine) is available at both libraries and allows patrons to greatly enlarge print and/or change the colour contrasts.
  • Magnifiers are available at both branches for patrons to use while visiting the library to help them browse our collection.
  • A walker and wheelchair are available at both library branches for patrons to use while visiting the library.

CELA Services

As a member of the Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA), the Barrie Public Library offers access to over 300,000 items to anyone who has a visual, physical, or learning disability that prevents them from reading conventional print. Individuals registered with CELA may also access Bookshare, a selection of popular e-synthesized titles (over 500,000 titles available).

Enjoy books, magazines, newspapers and described videos in a variety of formats including audio, e-text, downloadable, and braille formats.

To set up an account with CELA, please ask staff at any of the service desks for assistance. A Barrie Public Library membership is also required.

Contact us

For more information about our accessibility practices, please call 705-728-1010, email or fill out our Ask a Librarian form.