In accordance with federal and state law, the Library offers accommodation to the needs of patrons who are accessibility-challenged by the Library’s physical layout. We encourage patrons to contact the Office of Accessibility Services to register your defined disability with them and utilize their services, including specially-equipped computers and other accessibility devices. More about OAS services »
The library has a designated ADA computer loaded with accessibility software (see below for list) on the second floor of the library. Patrons who need this computer have priority. For times that the Library is not open please contact the Office of Accessibility Services for other locations of accessibility enabled computer resources and for training and logins for these platforms. Much of this software is supported through CUNY Assistive Technology Services.
Library accessibility services
Patrons should feel free to ask at the Reference Desk or contact us in advance when accommodations are needed—for example, for the physical retrieval of books from our shelves, photocopying, scanning, or individual research assistance in a non-distracted environment. Every effort will be made by the Library to meet such requests expeditiously. A telephone consultation via TTY for hearing or speech impaired patrons can also be arranged.
The library can partner with the Office of Accessibility Services to to convert class readings and library research materials into accessible formats - for example, we can bring reserve books or reference books to the Office of Accessibility Services for conversion if necessary. The Office of Accessibility Services works with all students registered as needing accommodation for their class readings which they might acquire directly from the publisher, through Bookshare or the Access Text Network. Open Library/Internet Archives offers many modern texts in copyright through their DAISY/Print Disabled books program; see also Learning Ally and National Library Service (NLS).
For accommodation requests and to make an appointment to learn about our accessibility services, please contact our Access Services Library Liaison, Ellen Belcher (email@example.com or 212-237-8238), or contact the Reference Desk.
We also encourage using reference assistance by email, telephone at (212) 237-8246, chat, or in person, as well as attending our drop-in workshops or making individual appointments with a Reference Librarian for assistance with all of your research and library needs.
Physical access to the Library
For elevator access between the Haaren Hall lobby and the floors within the Library, please ask the Circulation Desk (lower floor) or the Reference Desk (upper floor). Members of the John Jay community that regularly need to use the library elevator to between the 10th Avenue entrance and the atrium level should contact Office of Accessibility Services and/or Public Safety to have their ID coded for card access.
Elevator access between the floors within the Library does not require Library or Public Safety staff intervention.
If you are arranging a pick-up or drop-off, we recommend these addresses for your transportation to avoid barriers due to ongoing construction at the 899 Tenth Avenue entrance. These college entrances connect to the Library entrance via wheelchair-accessible routes.
- 524 West 59th Street (between 10th & 11th Avenues) Map
- 860 11th Avenue (between West 58th & West 59th Streets) Map
Assistive technology available in the Library
There are 6 special computer workstations available, plus an additional one in the library classroom. Two are located on the second floor of the Library and four downstairs in the Reserve Lab; priority of use is given to accessibility-challenged Library patrons. Please ask at the Reference Desk or the Lab Assistants in the Reserve Lab for access to these workstations. Please note that only one work station upstairs is equipped with an adjustable-height table and another that is in a more distraction free environment. All the computers have the following software:
- JAWS screen reading software
- Zoom Text screen reading and enlarging
- Dragon Naturally Speaking speech and imaging software
- Kurtzweil 3000 (additionally available on all computers with word processing)
Follow the links above to tutorials for each of these programs.
Scanning: Three scanners are located in the Reserve Room downstairs, and four scanners are located upstairs near the Law Reference section (south wing). Email the resulting files, save them to your USB drive, or print them. Make your scanned PDFs full-text searchable (using OCR) at the Accessibility computer located near the scanners upstairs. Open the PDF in Adobe Acrobat and select "Recognize Text » In this file." This will allow your scans to be read by TTS (text-to-speech) software.
The Library also has two quite old VTek Voyager XL that still work for enlarging text to any size 4x-60x using a CCTV. More advanced Kurzweil reading software and two more up to date CCTV magnifiers is available at the Accessibility Office. We recommend taking books out of the Library and using their machines for reading enlarged text.
More CUNY/John Jay accessibility resources
- John Jay's Office of Accessibility Services
- CUNY office of Disability Services
- John Jay/CUNY Accommodations Policy & Contact Information
- Reasonable Accommodations: A Faculty Guide to Teaching College Students with Disabilities.
- CCSD (CUNY coalition for Students with Disabilities)
Other accessibility resources
- The National Disabilities Rights Network
- United States Department of Justice Civil Rights Division Information and Technical Assistance on the ADA
- United States Department of Education, Laws and Guidance on Disability Discrimination
- Americans for Disabilities Act Statute (revised in 2008)
- 1999 Olmstead Decision (OLMSTEAD v. L. C. 527 U.S. 581)
- Submit your own stories at I am Olmstead
Contact information for Access Services Library Liaison: Ellen Belcher (firstname.lastname@example.org or 212-237-8238)