Richard Orme, Chief Executive Officer at The DAISY Consortium delivered the following welcome piece for the UKAAF
The Publisher’s Association works to ensure the value of publishing, and the contribution it makes culturally and to the UK’s economy, is understood.
Part of its important outreach is a set of special publisher communities, made up of members from a particular function who provide specialist and technical advice to councils and staff. A key one that the UKAAF community will be familiar with is the special Accessibility Action Group; active for 10 years, it was set up to discuss developments in legislation, policy and technology and how this impacts accessible publishing, and UKAAF is a member of the AAG.
The group organises an annual event and develops guidance and best practice briefings for publishers on relevant matters. What’s important for us is that part of its remit is also bringing publishers together with advocacy organisations committed to supporting the production and distribution of accessible publications.
Despite COVID and all the hassles it’s caused us, there’s reason for optimism in 2021. That’s because in November the group secured a new chair. Stacy Scott manages the RNIB Bookshare UK Education Collection service, which provides accessible curriculum content to learners with a print-disability, and is also Publisher Relationship Manager at the charity. A blind mathematics graduate, Stacy has been professionally involved in the Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) education sector for almost fifteen years (check out Stacy’s profile over at LinkedIn).
Stacy is already busy planning the agenda for her first event, a virtual meeting of the group in January. If you are work in the UK publishing industry and are interested in learning about, and participating in accessibility developments (after all, this is an action group!) then you can write to firstname.lastname@example.org
The UKAAF board would like to very much welcome Stacy to this important accessibility leadership position in our sector. I’m sure UKAAF members and allies would also want to take this opportunity to wish her all the best at an exciting and fast moving time in the development of digital publishing.