Many organizations think compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) pertains only to physical, tangible items in a brick-and-mortar building (like wheelchair ramps, bathroom handrails, etc.) There are an increasing number of guidelines regarding websites and ADA compliance.
What is ADA Website Compliance?
ADA compliance is about fairness and accessibility. While the ADA does not provide specifics for information technologies (which includes websites), the US Department of Justice (DOJ) has made it clear that the ADA is applicable to websites. Click here to read the DOJ’s position in their announcement of the Peapod Settlement Agreement
"The Justice Department announced today that it has entered into a settlement agreement with Ahold U.S.A. Inc. and Peapod LLC, the owners and operators of www.peadpod.com, to remedy alleged violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).”
Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 is the industry standard for Internet accessibility. Organizations should look to WCAG 2.0 Level AA guidelines as a barometer on how to make website content accessible until the DOJ develops formal regulations.
Currently, the DOJ is developing regulations, and formal rulemaking is expected in 2018. However, given the DOJ’s position in current cases, businesses should not wait to take steps to make web content accessible.
ADA Web Site Compliance Audit
Encore offers ADA web site compliance audits to help you understand the accessibility of your content for users with disabilities. Website audits may enhance customer satisfaction and minimize business vulnerability or risk.
- utilize automated tools and human testing to evaluate your site
- include a written assessment
- identify the severity and impact of any accessibility issues found