Monday, September 9, 2013

Countries should sign Marrakesh Treaty Sept 27

In June the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired, or Otherwise Print Disabled was established through the World Intellectual Property Organization.  51 countries signed the treaty, but Canada and others have not yet signed.

At the upcoming September/October meeting of the General Assembly of WIPO, "An opportunity for additional Member States to sign the Treaty will be available...on September 27, 2013"  (page 2 para 7).

The UK, Switzerland, and Brazil, along with 48 other countries, all signed the treaty on the last day of the diplomatic conference.  To signify its support for the treaty and for rights for the visually impaired, and to reflect the reportedly valuable role that Canada played during the negotiations, Canada should sign the Marrakesh Treaty on September 27.

Interest groups and individuals should encourage their governments also to sign the treaty on September 27.  While September 27 will be an ideal occasion to do so, the treaty remains open for signature for one year until June 27 2014.  After that date, it will continue to be possible to accede to the treaty.

1 comment:

  1. Dr. Bannerman -- I recently helped a blind student in Thailand apply for a Thai Government Scholarship and admittance to PhD Programs in the USA, UK, and Australia. He was required to take the TOEFL exam which for him entailed the reading of the test material by a proctor and his providing answers with a Braille slate and stylus.

    This is the document explaining the conditions for a student requiring disability accommodation for TOEFL and other ETS exams. Compare the above with the requirements (sic) in the WIPO Treaty for a person to be an eligible beneficiary.