New Initiative to Support Accessibility of Queen’s Website
ITServices is working with the Accessibility Hub on an initiative to provide accessibility auditing for all Queen's University websites. The goal is to help website owners gauge their level of readiness for meeting the legislative requirements outlined in the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA).
Queen's websites provide valuable information for prospective and current students, staff, faculty, alumni, and the general public. It is therefore important that these websites are fully accessible to all users, including those with physical or cognitive disabilities. Under the regulation, all public-facing websites at Queen’s are subject to the accessibility standards set out in Section 14 of the AODA, and must be compliant with WCAG 2.0 at Level A by January 1, 2014.
ITServices is helping Queen’s website owners meet these obligations by piloting a one-year subscription for new auditing software and will be providing them with access to the application to review their own websites for compliance.
While ITServices has previously offered a Web Content Accessibility Review service to departments and faculties for a nominal fee, this new service is considerably more valuable in that it allows website owners to have direct access to the software so that they can perform their own audits and view reports and recommendations. The service will be free of charge for the duration of the pilot period, after which a decision will be made regarding its continuation.
Do you Own or Manage a Website at Queen’s?
ITServices has started the process of identifying many of the key websites under the Queen’s domain and will be contacting the owners about setting up an account for the software. However, it is unlikely that every website will be discovered in this process, and anyone who owns or manages a website at Queen’s is encouraged to contact Web Services at firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire about the service.
When contacting Web Services, please remember to identify any websites that your manage by providing URLs for each.
- For more information about the AODA, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.0) and available services and initiatives offered at Queen’s, please visit the Accessibility Hub at www.queensu.ca/accessibility.
- The Accessibility Hub also provides help and information specific to Website Accessibility; including links to resources and how-to guides.
- Queens’ University has developed an official resource on creating accessible websites: The Web Standards and Accessibility Development Guide.
- ITServices offers a Web Accessibility Workshop on Moodle.