New Law Requirements for Websites to be ADA Compliant

  • Oct 31, 2018

ADA means the Americans with Disabilities Act, which became law in 1990. It prohibits disability discrimination against individuals in all areas of public life. It applies to any area that offers goods and services to the public. It’s important to mention that in January 2018, some new federal regulations have taken effect.

Basic ADA Compliance Checklist

Ready to review if your website meets ADA regulations? Here are some of the basic web accessibility details:

  • Include a "skip navigation" link. This enables people using screen readers to skip to the main content of each web page.

  • Add alt tags and title tags to images. These should be put in place to describe the images on the site. These should convey a meaning equivalent to an individual who is able to see the image. This includes photographs, maps, or any other graphics.

  • Specify link destinations. If an image links to another page, then its alt tags and title tags must indicate where the visitor would be going. This also applies to CTA button.

  • Post documents in an accessible format. For example, PDFs are not accessible to reading impaired visitors using a screen reader. Therefore, the content in your site's PDFs should also be available in HTML format.

  • Use audio descriptions and video captions. If you offer videos on your website, it's important that these are accessible to individuals who are deaf or blind. Therefore, audio with details of what is happening in the video should be provided to individuals who cannot see it. Likewise, video captions should be included for people who cannot hear it.

  • Avoid embedding videos into the web page. It is more accessible for users without the needed software if a link to the video is provided instead. If you do decide to embed the video, be sure to provide a link to download the media player software needed.

  • Make sure header tags are placed in order. Since screen readers essentially read HTML content, it's important for your header tags to be placed logically.

  • Use identifiers for charts or tables. Rows and columns should be clearly labeled for disabled visitors.

  • Include a website accessibility policy that can be easily reached. This can easily be placed in the footer menu.

Who Needs to Be Compliant?

The general agreement states, that any business considered as a “public place” should have an ADA compliant web presence. “Public place” could be referred to retail, or any business the general public should be able to use and access easily.

To sum it up, we should say that if you are a business that exists to benefit the public, a local or state government agency, or private business with 15 or more employees, you should be compliant with the ADA regulations. However, it doesn’t guarantee a job for people with disabilities. An employee must be qualified for the position.

If you require any further information, feel free to contact us.

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