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DOJ issues web accessibility guidance under the Americans with Disabilities Act

Blind person using computer with braille display

The Department of Justice published guidance on March 18 on web accessibility and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). It explains how state and local governments (entities covered by ADA Title II) and businesses open to the public (entities covered by ADA Title III) can make sure their websites are accessible to people with disabilities in line with the ADA’s requirements.

The guidance discusses a range of topics, including the importance of web accessibility, barriers that inaccessible websites create for some people with disabilities, when the ADA requires web content to be accessible, tips on making web content accessible and other information and resources. The guidance offers plain language and user-friendly explanations to ensure that it can be followed by people without a legal or technical background.

“We have heard the calls from the public on the need for more guidance on web accessibility, particularly as our economy and society become increasingly digitized,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke for the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “This guidance will assist the public in understanding how to ensure that websites are accessible to people with disabilities. People with disabilities deserve to have an equal opportunity to access the services, goods and programs provided by government and businesses, including when offered or communicated through websites.”

Finally, the guidance reviews the department’s ongoing work to advance website accessibility for people with disabilities through statements of interest and enforcement matters. For example, the department recently entered into numerous settlements with businesses — including Hy-Vee, Inc., The Kroger Co., Meijer, Inc., and Rite Aid Corporation to ensure that websites for scheduling vaccine appointments are accessible.

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