Chelmsford Public Library is committed to making library services accessible for all our users.

Main Library Handicapped Access

The Main Library is fully handicapped-accessible. This includes access to all areas of the building, and all collections and resources.

MacKay Library Handicapped Access

The MacKay Branch is wheelchair-accessible to the first floor. This includes the following collections:

  • adult fiction
  • new materials
  • children’s materials
  • movies
  • current periodicals
  • large print
  • audiobooks

Staff is available for assistance in accessing any of MacKay’s other collections.

For People with Limited Vision

  • Large print books, both fiction and nonfiction, in the Adams part of the library
  • Reader’s Digest: Large Print Edition, in the Adams part of the library
  • Audiobooks and playaways on the main floor
  • A handheld magnifier is available at the Reference Desk for use in the library
  • Low-vision computers with high-visibility/low-mobility keyboard are available in the Large Print Room and on the lower level.
  •  An Optelec magnifier is also available in the Large Print room.

For People who are Deaf or Hard-of-Hearing

  • DVD films with English subtitles
  • Closed caption DVDs.
  • videophoneA public videophone is available for use in the library by any deaf or hearing-impaired person who speaks sign language and needs to make a phone call. The videophone is powered by Purple, an assistive technology that makes the phone call via video relay service, which gives the caller an on-screen sign language interpreter. A Purple account is not required in order to use the public videophone, can be used to call any phone number, and the device may be used free of charge. The videophone is available by request at the reference desk on the lower level of the library. It is not necessary to have a library card to use the videophone, but staff will hold your photo ID at the desk while the device is in use.
  • Learn American Sign Language. The Library subscribes to Rocket Languages, a web-based resource for language learning. ASL is one of the available languages, which allows patrons to learn at their own pace or refresh their skills.
  • Join the library’s American Sign Language Conversation Circle. The group meets from 7-8pm on the second Tuesday of each month.

For People with Limited Mobility

  • Ramp at the side library entrance (Both Main Library and MacKay Branch)
  • Automatic door openers at the front entrance (Main)
  • Designated handicapped parking spaces in the side parking lots (Both)
  • Wheelchair accessible service desks (Both)
  • Elevator to all floors of the library (Main)
  • Handicapped accessible restrooms (Both)
  • Sit down catalog terminal that accommodates wheelchairs (Both)

Other Assistive Services

  • Home delivery for individuals regularly unable to make it to the library: staff select and deliver library materials to Chelmsford residents who have difficulty coming to the library because of age, illness, or temporary or permanent disability. Delivery is based on availability of volunteer drivers, and according to our Home Delivery Service policy. For more information contact Vickie Turcotte 978-256-5521 x1106 or email
  • Reference Service in person, by telephone (978-256-5521 x1211)  and by email (
  • Catalog assistance: reference librarians will check the online catalog, check the shelves, place holds and interlibrary loans for individuals whenever the library is open
  • Staff will retrieve materials anywhere in the building.  Just ask!

Books and Periodicals for People with Disabilities

  • Books, videos, and other materials on disabilities in our online catalog 
  • OverDrive for Android, iOS (iPhone/iPad/iPod touch), and Windows is compatible with most accessibility programs and apps (including native ones like TalkBack, VoiceOver, and Narrator).
    • Talkback: Android/iPhone – TalkBack adds spoken, audible, and vibration feedback to your device. TalkBack comes pre-installed on most Android devices. To turn on the accessibility shortcut on your device’s Settings app, open Accessibility, then Accessibility shortcut or Volume key shortcut. At the top, turn on Accessibility shortcut or Volume key shortcut.
    • VoiceOver: iPhone – VoiceOver is a gesture-based screen reader. Hear a description of everything happening on your screen, from battery level to who’s calling to which app your finger is on. To turn on the feature, access Settings, then General then Accessibility.
    • Narrator: Windows 10 – A light-duty screen reader utility. It reads dialog boxes, windows controls, apps, and webpages. To start, tap the Search button on the taskbar, enter narrator in the empty box, then click Narrator in the results.
  • Choice Magazine Listening: This service provides talking magazines at no cost to visually impaired and physical disabled adults. Provides audio recordings of memorable articles, stories, interviews, essays and poems from magazines

Websites on Disabilities



  • Massachusetts Office on Disability: State agency whose primary mission is to assure access to state and local programs, activities, and services for people with disabilities.
  • Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission: State agency responsible for Vocational Rehabilitation Services and eligibility determination for the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) federal benefits programs.
  • DisabilityInfo: Index of services and resources for people with disabilities in Massachusetts, searchable by disability or location.
  • New England ADA Center:  Provides information, guidance and training on the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), tailored to meet the needs of business, government and individuals at local, regional and national levels.
  • Perkins in Watertown MA:  Organization committed to improving the lives of people with blindness and deafblindness.  Includes Perkins School  for the Blind and the Perkins Library, which circulates items in braille, audio, electronic, and large print formats.
  • Disability Law Center:  Protection and advocacy agency for the rights of Massachusetts residents with disabilities.


  •  Comprehensive resource for disabilities of all types.
  • Information about the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) from the U.S. Department of Justice.
  •  U.S. federal government website for information on disability programs and services nationwide, such as  how to apply for disability benefits, find a job, get health care or pay for accessible housing.
  • Customizing Microsoft products: How to customize Microsoft products for various types of disabilities; includes features built into Microsoft products and software that can be purchased.
  • Firefox Accessibility Features
  • National Library Service: NLS is a free braille and talking book library service for people with temporary or permanent low vision, blindness, or a physical disability that prevents them from reading or holding the printed page. Through a national network of cooperating libraries, NLS circulates books and magazines in braille or audio formats, delivered by postage-free mail or instantly downloadable. Uses BARD: Talking Book Topics lists the audio books and magazines added to the NLS collection within the last two months and available through a network of cooperating libraries.
  • Where members of the deaf, deaf-blind and hard of hearing community rate and review businesses based on deaf-friendliness.