Creating your accessibility statement
The changes to accessibility requirements for public sector organisations has lead to a lot of interest in accessibility statements. We've gathered together our advice on this important issue.
What is an accessibility statement?
An accessibility statement is:
- an expression of an organisation’s commitment to accessibility,
- an overview of the site's current state of accessibility, and
- a statement of the future goals.
What should the statement include?
Each organisation will be different but you should always include:
Provide information about the standards that have been used to determine the level of site’s accessibility, and the current status of the site for example, WCAG 2.1 AA.
Outline what the site currently does to make it easy to use for people with disabilities, for example:
- all content can be accessed using keyboard,
- all images have an alternative description,
- a skip to content link is provided at the top of every page,
- you use a third party service like Browsealoud or ReciteMe
Explain what areas aren't fully accessible - usually this will be around media for most sites. It is important to be honest and transparent if you are aware of issues. Letting users know in advance can manage expectations and reduce their frustration at the site.
For each of the issues you should describe how you are planning to resolve them.
Requirements for public sector bodies in the UK
If you're a public sector body then the format of your accessibility statements is more strict and certain sections are mandatory. For more information see the relevant section of The Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) Accessibility Regulations 2018.
Sample accessibility statements
There are a range of accessibility statement generators available but two of the most useful are:
Does accessibility matter?
Caring about accessibility shows that you care about all your users. Moreover, if you're responsible for a public sector websites or mobile apps in the UK then having an accessibility statement is a legal requirement.
The Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) Accessibility Regulations 2018 states that all public websites and apps have to meet accessibility standards and publish an accessibility statement.
Help with accessibility
We partner with Silktide to provide an ongoing accessibility review service that ensures that your site not only meets the requirements - but continues to meet the requirements as new features and content is added to the site.
Contact us if you're interested in a demonstration of the platform and the value that it can bring around content quality as well as accessibility. You can also view our Silktide report to see how we live up to our promise to build accessible sites.