LIBER – along with other library associations, consortia, and professional librarians in over 150 countries – is calling for an effective treaty that will increase access to information for visually impaired people.
Many years of negotiations have gone into creating such a treaty. It is hoped that this process will finish later this month, with the formal signing of the treaty at a WIPO Diplomatic Conference in Morocco.
Libraries worldwide have a particular interest in the negotiations because they are one of the key agencies serving print disabled people, especially in developing countries. As a profession, librarians enjoy a strong position of trust in the disability and rightsholder communities.
Such a treaty would allow libraries to better serve print disabled people and society in general by:
- Ensuring efficient cross-border transfer of works;
- Upholding the right to read for the world’s print disabled people – regardless of format;
- Recognising the role of libraries in providing access to accessible format works;
- Promoting the public interest as central to the balance in copyright law;
The Diplomatic Conference in Marrakesh is an opportunity to ensure that another generation of visually impaired persons and persons with print disabilities is not deprived of the right to read. LIBER strongly urges WIPO Member States to make the most of the moment and conclude an effective treaty.
Photo credit: Kusum reading (flickr)