As the world turns and changes from day to day, we have become even more dependent on the web for information. I’ve been thinking about how I can best help my clients. In our current situation, one of the topics that’s come up for me is website Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessibility.

According to figures released by the 2012 Census Bureau, 18.7% of the U.S. population has some type of disability that impacts their ability to understand or communicate with the web.

If all websites were coded to be accessible to those with disabilities, the world would be a better place. Unfortunately, that is not the way things are.

Here are some examples of compliant and non-complaint sites.

New York University yes, go Violets!
MIT no! Curious as to why one of the top computer science schools in the country isn’t.
The Guggenheim yes, The Louvre no 🙁 yes. Jeff Bezos and team has ADA compliance all figured out! They want everyone to be able to buy their stuff.
Depending on your business, you may incur legal penalties for not having an ADA compliant site.

What makes a website ADA compliant? The sites are coded in such a way that screen readers are able to ‘translate’ the site to those who are for example visually or hearing impaired.

In the image above, I included a description of the image. This is what would be added to the html alt tag on a web page. When a visually impaired individual uses a screen reader when reading a web page, they would hear the description “A handicap accessible birdwatching station. Kern County, Kern National Wildlife Refuge, California”.

How do you know if your site is ADA compliant? This is something that I can help you with and determine the best steps to move forward.