There’s another way to obtain the information in this article if you’re visually impaired.

Call 1-888-786-3638, then 5555 when prompted. Follow the prompts and select “Lewiston Sun Journal.”

A computer will read you the rest of the story.

The Maine State Library has added a service that gives visually impaired people access to the Sun Journal, Kennebec Journal, USA Today and The New York Times Sunday edition. More will come, said Librarian Chris Boynton, such as the Bangor Daily News and the Portland Press Herald.

A computer scans the text of a paper’s Web site, and encodes it into spoken word for the listener. “One of the things people with vision loss say they miss the most is being able to read the newspaper,” Boynton said.

Chelsie Tibbetts, rehabilitation counselor for the Division of the Blind and Visually Impaired in Lewiston, said people’s options to read the newspaper become limited when they lose their vision. Since the text is dark and small, it’s generally one of the first things people discard as their eyesight deteriorates, she said.

The Iris Network, based in Portland, provides a program where the blind can get condensed versions of newspaper articles through their television or Internet. Each news organization is given a time. The Sun Journal, for example, is read from 8 to 9 a.m. Monday through Friday.


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