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For Patrons with Physical Disabilities

Most NYPL libraries are fully wheelchair accessible.  If you are uncertain about whether your specific needs can be met at a particular location, please call ahead to help plan your visit.  Find accessibility information and contact telephone numbers for all NYPL libraries.

The following services are available to ensure that  patrons with physical disabilities have access to our collections of books and other materials.  

Books By Mail

Books by Mail is a free service that provides books and other library materials to people who are homebound and live in the Bronx, Manhattan and Staten Island. 

How to apply

1.  Download an application form (available in English and Spanish):

2.  Complete page 2 of the application.  It must be signed by a health  or social service professional (eg.  a doctor, nurse or social worker) who can certify that you are unable to leave your home due to either a temporary or permanent  disability.

3.  Complete page 3 of the application by providing information about yourself and the types of books that you would like us to send you each month.  

4. If you do not have an New York Public Library library card, complete an application for a Homebound Library Card.

5.  Once completed, mail all of the above to:

       ASK NYPL

       Attn: Books By Mail Registration

      11 West 40th Street New York, NY 10018

If you have any questions, please call  917-ASK-NYPL (917-275-6975).

When registration is complete, you will receive your first Books by Mail delivery along with a welcome letter which further explains how the service works. The letter will include contact information for when you have questions or want to place requests for library materials.​

Once you are registered for the Books by Mail service, materials are sent in a reusable envelope by book rate through the United States Postal Service. The packages are delivered to your home and must be returned in the same envelope by depositing them in a mail box or by having the letter carrier pick them up. The address card in the front envelope must be reversed so that our address and the pre-paid return postage are showing.

Talking Books Program

If you have a physical disability that makes it difficult to hold a book or turn pages you may be eligible for the Talking Books program.  Talking Books  provides professionally narrated audiobooks and a specially designed book-playing machine that are mailed to your home. Information about this National Library Service, administered locally by the Andrew Heiskell Braille and Talking Book Library, may be found here, or by calling 212-206-5400.

Children and teens with a disability can enroll in the Andrew Heiskell Library's adapted Summer Reading Program.  It has great titles in accessible formats, and also offers remote participation and accessible prizes.  Contact 212-206-5400 for more details.

Digitization of select research materials

Researchers who are homebound or have a print disability or visual impairment can explore many of our research collections online and request digitization of specific items of interest.  To request the digitization service email details to accessibility@nypl.org.