The University System of Maryland & Affiliated Institutions (USMAI) joins the Library Accessibility Alliance (LAA) as a partner to advance accessibility for library electronic resources, with the goal of providing equal access to information for all library users. USMAI is a consortium of seventeen academic libraries in the State of Maryland. Under the Library Accessibility Alliance umbrella, members of the Association of Southeastern Research Libraries (ASERL), Big Ten Academic Alliance (BTAA), Greater Western Library Alliance (GWLA), Washington Research Library Consortium, Ivy Plus Library Confederation (IVPLC), and USMAI consortia work together toward improving the accessibility in libraries.
"We're honored to join the important work of the LAA," said Andrew K. Pace, USMAI's Executive Director. "Maryland libraries are full of professionals dedicated to diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) efforts, and we look forward to making a meaningful contribution to the Alliance."
USMAI supports effective access to library resources by providing and promoting a range of services and leveraging expertise. USMAI is committed to helping the Library Accessibility Alliance commit to cross-disability solidarity, supporting growth, understanding and promoting accessible-first design.
The Big Ten Academic Alliance (BTAA) formed the Library E-Resource Accessibility Group in 2015 to address concerns about the accessibility of library e-resources. Since 2016, BTAA has been conducting third-party evaluations of electronic resource platforms and collections, publicly posting the evaluations for review by vendors and libraries. In 2019, the Association of Southern Research Libraries (ASERL) partnered with the BTAA creating the Library Accessibility Alliance. The LAA engages with library vendors in initiatives to improve usability of online resources for all users.