We’ve discussed screen readers in previous articles here at the Bureau of Internet Accessibility. However, with the June release of the updated Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, WCAG 2.1, it’s the perfect time to look back on what web developers should already know about screen readers, and what you should know moving forward.
If you suffer from vision impairment or any type of eye injury, web accessibility will be increasingly important to you. Fortunately, there are many tools and devices that can be used on properly accessible web pages to improve the user experience of people with vision problems.
In technology, something that is robust comes with a wide range of capabilities or is able to deal with many different situations. Robustness, as defined by WCAG, refers specifically to web content that is compatible with a variety of “user agents”: browsers, assistive technologies, and other means of accessing web content.
Content that is understandable can be read and comprehended by users without undue effort. This means that the content should be understandable both by the users themselves and by assistive technologies such as screen readers.
WCAG’s emphasis on perceivability ensures that users can passively take in and access the information on your website. Operability, on the other hand, also guarantees that users can interact with and make full use of the site.
With the release of the latest version in June, WCAG 2.1, now is the perfect time for a refresher on the four WCAG main principles. The first, perceivability, requires web content to be presented in a way that all users can recognize and understand.
The ongoing delay in the release of federal accessibility guidelines has contributed to the giant increase in website accessibility lawsuits in 2018. With the lack of a federal directive by the DOJ, law firms are actively pursuing suits, resulting in a large spike in the number of web accessibility cases being filed.
June 5th, 2018 saw the first evolution of the WCAG standards in a decade with the release of WCAG 2.1. These new recommendations include updates to address mobile devices, as well as to better serve people with low vision and cognitive difficulties.
In America, the declaration of the nation’s commitment that people with disabilities are afforded the same levels of freedom and independence as everyone else is demonstrated by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The legislation details the ways in which the federal government ensures that state and local government services, public accommodations and commercial facilities must accommodate the needs of people with disabilities.
Uber, Lyft, and other ride-hailing services have attempted to fill the transportation gap for people with disabilities, providing on-demand transportation at a price that’s competitive with traditional taxi companies. In order to cater to users with disabilities, ride-hailing companies must make website and mobile application accessibility a priority.
National Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Awareness Day is dedicated to helping people better understand PTSD and its impacts on so many in our society. For people living with PTSD, fully accessible online services are an integral part of ensuring access to vital services.
As summer vacation begins, parents, businesses, and governments should all work to ensure that everyone, including children with disabilities, can enjoy facilities such as zoos, museums, public parks, and beaches. Web accessibility can play a vital role in helping people with disabilities find and interact with public and private facilities this summer.
The planning phase of travel is essential for people with a disability who may need to spend extra time researching and asking questions before setting off on a trip. Therefore, it is vital that websites serving the travel industry are fully accessible for all users.
Men’s Health Month seeks to encourage health exams and screenings, early treatment of injuries and diseases, and early detection of serious illnesses. Men with disabilities need accessible websites to gain access to health information and to use the Internet to interact with healthcare providers.
A recent market study conducted by Mandala Research has found that American adults with disabilities spend more than $17 billion each year on travel. Hotel website and service accessibility is a necessity for the would-be travelers.
June is Cataract Awareness Month. For people affected by cataracts or recovering from cataract surgery, web accessibility can be vital, allowing them to continue to access information online and enjoy a high quality of life despite vision impairment. This includes the ability to access content via assistive devices such as screen readers.
BoIA release a new tool, the Color Contrast Accessibility Validator. The tool is free and is intended for use by website owners and developers to test their web pages for color contrast issues that can impede usability for people with visual disabilities.
As anyone who has gone to the wrong gate or nearly missed their flight can attest, navigating airports and catching planes can be stressful and sometimes confusing. These challenges are even bigger for people with visual impairments or hearing conditions. To help address this issue, the United States Department of Transportation has expanded the Air Carrier Access Act.
ADA web accessibility lawsuits have targeted organizations of all sizes and all industries, including a number of healthcare organizations. This article discusses some high-profile healthcare web accessibility lawsuits and offers suggestions for how your own organization can lower its risk.
Two recent regulations from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services make it clear that web accessibility must be a priority for healthcare providers.
May is Healthy Vision Month. According to the National Institutes of Health, there are 3.2 million Americans with some degree of visual impairment or blindness. What’s more, this number is expected to more than double to 8 million by 2050, including 2 million people who will be legally blind. Web accessibility will be increasingly important in order to provide goods and services to the millions of Americans with visual disabilities.
The Internet has democratized the healthcare industry, giving patients and their loved ones access to more health and medical information than ever before.In particular, parents rely heavily on the Internet to find information on their child’s health.
Last Saturday, May 12th saw the celebration of International Nurses Day, which occurs every year on the birthday of history’s most famous nurse, Florence Nightingale. The event is intended to recognize and raise awareness of the contributions that nurses around the world make to society. Improving the accessibility of healthcare websites can go a long way in making nurses more efficient and productive.
Hospitals may be unintentionally shutting their doors to patients with disabilities by not considering accessibility when designing their websites. In order to adequately care for the 56 million Americans with a disability, hospitals must make web accessibility a priority.
As more health and medical information moves online, web accessibility will play an increasingly important role in promoting women’s health initiatives such as National Women’s Health Week.