Guest Column | June 26, 2014

Creating Fully Accessible Web Content: The Industrial Approach

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Creating Fully Accessible Web Content

By Shannon Kelly, Global Accessibility Solutions Subject Matter Expert, Actuate:The BIRT Company

How are your clients — or you — dealing with the challenge of accessibility?

Chances are, you are doing a fine job in terms of accessible facilities and architecture, perhaps with your internal hiring policies and maybe even with your website. It’s a lot less certain whether you and your clients are doing as good — and legally compliant — a job around the content on your websites.

There’s no end, unfortunately, of headlines in local, national and international press around aggrieved customers who have felt so ignored or improperly treated in this regard that they have sought legal redress. Many sectors are facing challenge around accessibility, especially in North America, the UK, Canada and Australia, though other parts of the world are not that far behind. That’s because of either existing or imminent legislation that mandates access by all sorts of people, but increasingly those with visual impairment: so think the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) of 1990 and the swath of litigious activity focused on digital accessibility, particularly aimed at Fortune 500 companies, including the recent iconic ruling by the Department of Justice on H&R Block. And there are many more examples, with observers expecting a lot more to follow.

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