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Another big step toward Marrakesh Treaty ratification

Today, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted unanimously to send the Marrakesh Treaty Implementation Act (S.2559) to the full Senate for a vote. If passed by two-thirds of the Senate, the legislation will go to the President for final signature.

For more than ten years, associations representing the print disabled, the Library Copyright Alliance (LCA) and other civil society organizations have worked to increase the availability of accessible reading materials for people with print disabilities. With the Implementation Act, the United States will join thirty-seven other countries whose laws allow for the cross-border sharing of accessible content. According to the U.S. State Department, Americans with print disabilities will have 350,000 more accessible titles available to them with the law’s passage. People with print disabilities that speak languages other than English will have access to accessible content in foreign languages.

Today’s vote is another promising development to full ratification and implementation of an international treaty—the first to provide an exception to international copyright law.

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Carrie Russell

Carrie Russell is the director of the Program on Public Access to Information in the Washington Office. Her portfolio includes copyright, international copyright, accessibility, e-books, and other public policy issues. She has an MLIS from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and an MA in media arts from the University of Arizona.

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