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CELA: Centre for Equitable Library Access – Available to you with a library membership

Public libraries in Manitoba, including Bibliothèque Allard Regional Library, are now offering patrons with print disabilities access to reading materials in formats of their choice through the Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA).

Print disabilities

Over three million Canadians have a print disability. A print disability is often described as a disability that makes it difficult or impossible to access standard text. Print disabilities include blindness or visual impairment, physical disabilities that make it hard to hold a book, or severe learning disabilities that makes it difficult to process written text. A print disability could also be temporary, for example, someone undergoing stroke rehabilitation or waiting for cataract surgery.

The CELA collection

CELA maintains a growing collection of over 1,000,000 items in English and French for all ages and interests. You can search the collection at

  • Books include fiction, non-fiction, poetry, children’s, young adult, business, self-help and more
  • Magazines include 150 full-text accessible magazines, such as Canadian Living, The Economist, Elle, 7 Jours, Popular Science, and more
  • Newspapers include the Winnipeg Free Press, Globe and Mail, National Post, New York Times and many others

CELA formats

CELA materials are available in multiple formats:

  • Audiobooks
  • Accessible ebooks or etext
  • Braille
  • Print braille (picture books in braille)


For audio or accessible ebooks, patrons can use a DAISY reader or an app like the Dolphin EasyReader that they can download to their smartphone or tablet. Ebooks are also available in ePub or Microsoft Word formats. Newspapers will work in any web browser on a computer, tablet or smartphone while connected to the internet.


Delivery options

  • Download items to an app (on smartphone or tablet) or to DAISY player – this option is called “direct to player”
  • Download from the CELA website (.zip) and transfer to a device
  • Physical items (CDs and braille) by mail to a patron’s home (free delivery and return by mail)


How to sign up for CELA services

  • You must have a library membership number.
  • For CELA services, you do not need to provide proof of a disability. You must self-declare.
  • You can self-register by completing the online CELA self-registration form
  • Library staff can complete the registration process on your behalf if needed.
  • You can find both these forms at
  • If you provide an email address during the registration process, you’ll receive a welcome email directly from CELA with their username and password.


Note: CELA users can access another service called Bookshare, which is a US service. For Bookshare, patrons must submit a signed proof of disability form. Most patrons will likely start with the CELA collection – it is a large collection and will likely contain all they need.


Additional information about CELA