The Obama administration record thus far in ensuring new Web sites are accessibility to people with disabilities hasn't been very good.
Initial releases of Data.gov and Recovery.gov, for instance, fell short of the requirements under Section 508 that mandate accessibility for people who are blind, deaf or have other
While the White House has since fixed these issues, Kareem Dale, the White House special assistant to the President on disability issues, is working with
fellow senior officials and the Chief Information Officer Council to ensure there are no future problems.
Ensuring that federal online content is accessible to the disabled--as section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act requires--is typically an afterthought, said
Bruce Bailey, accessibility IT specialist at U.S. Access Board, during an federally-sponsored web developer conference on April 27.
But access requirements could become more important as the federal Access Board prepares a refresh of the regulations. The board will hold a public hearing May 12 on guidelines it released in March; the draft rule is available for comment until June 21.
Accessibility should be top of mind when considering the list of current and emerging concerns in enterprise content management (ECM). High-volume transactional
output environments (HVTO) in particular are challenged more than ever to provide accessible content to all users.
PDF files are still the primary mechanism to store transactional information in ECM systems. Yet unfortunately, they are almost always inaccessible to a
key subset of users: people with visual impairments using screen readers.
Your company has developed a great product which you plan to position for selling to the U.S. Federal Government. Your product is on the GSA schedule, and now you are ready to bid for government contracts, or expecting the purchase orders.
But have you thought about accessibility to people with disabilities? Do you know if your product is Section 508 compliant?
As earlier promised to our readers, Even Grounds will post information related to the Section 508 update.
The Access Board released its first draft of recommendations for the Section 508 updates, and is seeking public comments.
For the first time in a decade, the U.S. Access Board is proposing an update to regulations covering access for disabled people for computer software, Web
sites, cell phones and other IT products and devices.
On March 17, the Access Board released a draft proposal for standards for electronic and information technology in the federal sector covered by Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act. It also updates some portions
of Section 255 of the Telecommunications Act. The notice will be published in the Federal Register March 22.
FALLS CHURCH, Va., March 8, 2010 – The Military Health System has launched a new Health.mil Web site that provides a single point of entry to military health
news, information and resources.
The site is part of the Defense Department's continued commitment to make health information available and easy to find, officials said. Content is categorized
by topic or audience, including servicemembers, retirees and families; health care providers; educators and researchers; Military Health System staff;
Defense Department leaders; and the media.
A Section 508 validator is a software application that can help you determine if your web pages meet the Section 508 standards. These are tools useful in ensuring that your website is accessible to persons with disabilities.
It is important to note that although these validators are readily available via the Internet, they may not be what you specifically need. It is a good idea to try them out first before including them in your accessibility procedures.
Also, remember that Section 508 validators do not entirely solve your accessibility problems. They can nonetheless let you find the issues much faster. Manual testing is still required to ensure your site’s accessibility.
When a redesigned Recovery.gov Web site was unveiled last month to track the distribution of stimulus dollars, it was touted as another example of the Obama administration’s push for greater transparency. But the technology and design of the site left one segment of the population less than satisfied.
Advocates for people with disabilities found a number of accessibility flaws on the site that jumbled the spending data or otherwise put it beyond the reach of people using screen readers and other assistive devices.