Special Services Unit


The Special Services Unit includes:

  • Services to the Visually Impaired and Disabled (SSH)
  • Services to State-Supported Institutions (SSI)

It provides a service of advice and consultation to libraries in state institutions; provides and maintains reading materials for individuals with visual impairments and other qualifying disabilties as well as selected state institutions.  The Unit targets library and information services to persons having difficulty using a library.

The Special Services Unit is a regional network library of the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, providing recorded books and other materials to qualifying individuals. To apply for these free library services, including "talking books," large print, braille, or audio-described videos, please complete the application below. Note that applications cannot be accepted via email, as we must have an original signature of the certifying authority.

The Special Services Unit is located at 578 Paine Turnpike North in Berlin. Office hours are Monday through Friday, 7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Closed state holidays.

For more information, email lib.ssu@state.vt.us, or call 1.800.479.1711 (toll free in Vermont) or 802.828.3273.


Application for free library service for persons who are blind or physically impaired (PDF)


Link to Special Services' online catalog

Instructions for individuals

Instructions for libraries


NLS BARD (Braille & Audio Reading Download) site


Non-NLS services:

List of audio-described DVDs and VHS, updated September 2014 (Word)

Universal Class free online classes (contact SSU for login)

List of BiFolkal and SlIdeas activity kits for libraries, nursing homes, and other institutions (Word)


Special Services Patron Newsletter in large print (most recent issues)


Newsletter for Readers of Large Print Spring 2014 (Word)  (PDF)

Winter 2014 (Word)  (PDF)

Summer 2013 (Word)  (PDF)

Winter 2013 (Word)  (PDF)

Summer 2012 (Word)  (PDF)


SSU Annual Report

          FY2014 PDF

FY2013 PDF

FY2012 PDF


SSU Library Advisory Council

Members 2014 (Word)


October 16, 2014 -- not yet approved

June 19, 2014

April 17, 2014

February 2014 meeting cancelled due to weather

November 21, 2013

August 15, 2013

May 23, 2013

Inaugural Meeting, February 6, 2013 





Collection Development Policy


Other websites of interest

Vermont Division for the Blind & Visually Impaired

Vermont Association for the Blind & Visually Impaired

Learning Ally (formerly Reading for the Blind & Dyslexic)



Department Organization Chart

Department Staff Directory