CIO magazine recently published a great article, "How to Prepare for Web Accessibility Before the Government Forces Your Hand". The piece explains the current landscape regarding web accessibility law and how Section 508 paved the way for web accessibility regulations. While Section 508 applies to government websites, a flurry of lawsuits related to equal access under the ADA (Americans With Disability Act) have recently put a new spotlight on the issue for everyone.
Recent high-profile lawsuit settlements against Netflix and Target have shown that the ADA applies to online access as well as physical places. These rulings have underscored a need for more regulation in this area, and as the authors point out, such regulation is inevitable.
New rules regarding web accessibility expected from DOJ
New rules from the Department of Justice regarding the ADA and its application to the web are expected to come down later this year. These updated regulations are expected to use the World Wide Web Consortium Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 (WCAG 2.0) as its definition of accessibility. The CIO article explains WCAG standards and helps give several helpful tips for bringing a site into compliance.
Here at Deque, we also believe in a proactive approach to web accessibility. The inevitability of new rulings requiring accessible web and mobile apps make this an excellent time to start building accessibility into your digital properties now.