Collections for People with Disabilities
Toronto Public Library offers a wide range of materials in alternate formats for customers with visual impairments, physical disabilities, and learning disabilities. You can find specific materials by searching the catalogue for the format needed. Items available for circulation can be put on hold and delivered to your local branch for pick-up.
Large Print Books
Large print books are available at many of our library branches. Titles include a wide choice of best-sellers, fiction and non-fiction. Some books are also available in French.
Audiobooks are full length recordings of popular fiction and non-fiction books on CD that you can listen to on your computer or portable device. Some titles are available in other languages.
Talking books are audiobooks on a single CD with full navigation. Listeners can jump from page to page, bookmark pages as well as go directly to a specific page number. These books are available to customers who are unable to read print due to a visual, physical or learning disability. Register by submitting a Talking Book Application form, which must be certified by a recognized health professional such as a doctor, nurse, therapist or social worker. Forms can be:
- Submitted to your local library
- Faxed to Mobile Library Services at 416-395-5594
- Or mailed to
Mobile Library Services Department
5120 Yonge Street
Ebooks, eAudiobooks, eMusic and eVideo
There are a variety of eBooks, eAudiobooks, eMusic and eVideos for children and adults that can be downladed to a computer or portable device with a valid library card and PIN number.
Descriptive videos are films with special narration which describes the action, characters, costumes, locations and sets to a viewer with visual disabilities without interfering with the movie's dialogue or sound effects. They are available in both DVD and VHS.
Click here for more information on locating descriptive videos and DVDs.
Closed Captioned Videos
Closed captioned videos have subtitles that can be seen with a closed captioned decoder or with a built-in decoder on newer televisions. Most feature DVDs come with optional subtitles as well.
CNIB Partners Program
Toronto Public Library also offers the CNIB Partners Program for people who have difficulty reading print due to a visual, physical or learning disability. This service provides access to the CNIB Digital Library, Canada's largest collection of alternative format books and online resources. The CNIB Library collection includes:
- 80,000 books (braille, e-braille, printbraille, e-text, audiobooks in DAISY or online)
- Popular audio magazines
- More than 50 community, national and international newspapers
- Descriptive films and television programs
- Canadian and bilingual content for all ages and interests
Eligible Toronto Public Library users with a valid library card can register for this service by contacting Home Library Service at 416-395-5557 or self-registering directly with the CNIB.