BANA to Hold 2014 Spring Meeting in Philadelphia, April 3–5

Press Release

March 2014

For Immediate Release

CONTACT: Frances Mary D'Andrea, Chair
Braille Authority of North America
Phone: 412-521-5797

The Braille Authority of North America (BANA), which meets face-to-face semiannually, will hold its 2014 spring meeting April 3–5 in Philadelphia, PA. This meeting will be hosted by Associated Services for the Blind (ASB), a BANA member organization. Meetings—including an Open Forum on Saturday, April 5—will take place at ASB, which is located at 919 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA, 19107. Items on the Board's agenda include updates of BANA's numerous ongoing projects. The Board will review formal reports from all of BANA's technical committees such as music, math, foreign language, and tactile graphics and will take action on recommendations when appropriate.

BANA continues to plan the transition to Unified English Braille (UEB) in the United States. In-depth reports will be presented by BANA's UEB Task Force, which is made up of Kim Charlson (ACB), Frances Mary D'Andrea (AFB), Judy Dixon (NLS), Jennifer Dunnam (NFB), Cindi Laurent (NBA), Mary Nelle McLennan (APH), and Sue Reilly (CTEBVI).

As always, interested parties are invited to observe the BANA Board meetings. If you are interested in observing the BANA meeting, please contact BANA Chair Frances Mary D'Andrea at 412-521-5797 or by email at

On Saturday, April 5, from 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM, BANA will host an Open Forum at ASB. This forum provides a venue for participants to discuss braille with the Board and to learn more about the workings of BANA. Open Forum participants are encouraged to express their views and suggestions surrounding braille and its future. Braille readers, teachers, and students as well as producers and distributors of braille are encouraged to take advantage of this opportunity to participate in a round-table discussion with the members of the BANA Board. To reserve your space at the Open Forum and to help ensure accurate counts for handouts, contact Frances Mary D'Andrea as indicated above.

For additional resource information, visit

The Board of BANA consists of appointed representatives from seventeen member organizations of braille producers, transcribers, teachers, and consumers.

The mission of the Braille Authority of North America is to assure literacy for tactile readers through the standardization of braille and/or tactile graphics.

The purpose of BANA is to promote and to facilitate the uses, teaching, and production of braille. Pursuant to this purpose, BANA will promulgate rules, make interpretations, and render opinions pertaining to braille codes and guidelines for the provisions of literary and technical materials and related forms and formats of embossed materials now in existence or to be developed in the future for the use of blind persons in North America. When appropriate, BANA shall accomplish these activities in international collaboration with countries using English braille. In exercising its function and authority, BANA shall consider the effects of its decisions on other existing braille codes and guidelines, forms and formats; ease of production by various methods; and acceptability to readers.