Edgeworks News

Edgeworks offers free assessments for non disabled-friendly websites

With an estimated eight out of ten websites remaining impossible for disabled people to access the Disability Discrimination Act Part III (DDA) will being taking action, from October 2004. Businesses that have not made ‘reasonable adjustments’ to assist disabled access to their websites, will be liable for prosecution – with fines reaching up to £50,000. To assist in achieving compliance, local digital agency The Edgeworks, is offering North West based companies and organisations a free website diagnostic appraisal that will highlight key issues and provide a basis for work needed ahead of the DDA.

The technology used by The Edgeworks to complete the diagnostic report has been developed by globally renowned usability experts UseableNet and conforms to World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) Web Content Accessibility Guidelines. These guidelines are generally accepted as the ‘de facto’ standards for web accessibility development. W3C publish guidelines that enable organisations to attain either an ‘A’, ‘AA’ or ‘AAA’ designation, with the Disability Rights Commission (DRC) advising a single ‘A’ as a minimum standard.

Director of Business Development Steve Helsby says "Awareness of the DDA is slowly growing, but there are still companies investing substantial amounts of time and money into websites that quite clearly will not meet the required standard."

The types of changes typically required include:

  • Scaleable text.
  • Alternative descriptions for images.
  • Text-only versions.
  • Navigation via a keyboard rather than mouse.
  • A range of high-level applications including sub-titles for audio and video presentations.
  • The Disability Rights Commission (DRC) has stated it intends to get tough with 81 per cent of British based sites that currently fall foul of accessibility guidelines.

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For further information please visit www.edgeworks.co.uk or call Steve Helsby on +44 (0)161 228 1712