We are delighted to share that Book*hug Press is now a Benetech Global Certified Accessible™ (GCA) publisher. Benetech, a nonprofit that empowers communities with software for social good, issues this accreditation to those publishers who produce EPUBs that meet a full range of accessibility features required to support the needs of all readers, including those with disabilities and learning differences. Book*hug completed certification through eBOUND Canada, a not-for-profit that enables independent Canadian publishers to engage in the digital marketplace.
Book*hug’s Co-publisher Jay Millar states, “At Book*hug Press, our mission is to publish work that meaningfully contributes to and reflects culture and society; books that challenge and push at the boundaries of cultural expectations. We are deeply committed to building a more inclusive and accessible book industry by supporting and championing culturally diverse voices whose work has been historically underrepresented in the publishing landscape, including work by IBPOC writers, LGBTQIA2S+ writers, deaf and disabled writers, and women.”
Co-publisher Hazel Millar adds, “Accessibility is an important piece of the puzzle for our mandate and we are equally committed to building a publishing program that is accessible to all readers. As such, we have committed to a number of initiatives from revising ebook publications, to working with an accessibility manager, to raising awareness among our staff and within our industry. We are also working to make poetry and other literary work both high art and approachable to all readers. While we are proud of the progress we have made so far, we realize this is just a start and will continue to look for ways to grow towards increasingly accessible publishing.” Read more about the actions we are taking here.
“All digital content can – and should – be born accessible,” said Brad Turner, Vice President and General Manager of Global Education and Literacy at Benetech. “Readers can select Book*hug’s Global Certified Accessible ebooks trusting that they meet a wide range of accessibility needs.”
Benetech’s GCA publisher certification program is the first-ever, third-party EPUB certification program to verify ebook accessibility. All approved publishers have demonstrated success consistently producing files in accordance with Benetech’s GCA certification standard, meeting the EPUB Accessibility 1.0 Conformance and Discovery specification and exceeding a publishing standard level of WCAG 2.0 AA. Benetech recognizes these publishers as creators of fully accessible EPUBs. eBOUND Canada, a GCA international partner, completed the evaluation.
“eBOUND believes that all content born-digital should be born accessible so that all people can have access to all content. As such, eBOUND is delighted to have formed a partnership with Benetech to support our Canadian independent publisher clients as they go through the important process of having all content born accessible. eBOUND’s goal is to have 80%+ of our publishing clients producing accessible content by 2024, supporting the goal of the Department of Canadian Heritage, whose generous support has made this work possible” said Deborah Nelson, CEO of eBOUND Canada.
Independent Canadian publishers interested in becoming a Global Certified Accessible publisher through eBOUND Canada’s accessible certification publishing program can visit: www.eboundcanada.org
To learn more about Benetech’s Global Certified Accessible Program visit: http://bornaccessible.benetech.org
About Book*hug Press
Celebrating adventures in literary publishing since 2004, Book*hug Press is a radically optimistic Canadian independent literary press working at the forefront of contemporary book culture. Our mandate is to publish innovative and contemporary books of literary fiction, literary nonfiction, literature in translation, and poetry by emerging and established writers.
eBOUND Canada is a not-for-profit organization that works with Canadian independent publishers to help them navigate and compete in the digital landscape. Accessible content creation is foundational to the work eBOUND does.
Benetech is a nonprofit dedicated to reducing social and economic inequity through software for social good. Benetech’s initiatives are transforming how students, jobseekers, and older adults across the globe read, learn, and work. We believe that access to information is a human right, and no person should encounter barriers to education, literacy, or employment due to differences or disability. Visit www.benetech.org