News from LIFE

7th Annual Global Accessibility Awareness Day is May 16th!

Join the world in making web, software, mobile information accessible. This is all about inclusion. Started in 2015 by a single blog post written by a Los Angeles based web developer it has leveraged into an extensive event. 

We are all more aware now of what screen readers are and the ability to use your voice for commands (think Siri). But there is still much more to do. Let’s share the know-how on making websites accessible. Let’s talk about what makes a website accessible.

  • photo descriptions, this includes MEMEs on social media
  • no PDF’s if they are not readable.
  • what colors are easier to differentiate
  • audio description and closed captioning of all video content

Things you can do: test your own website accessibility to a screen reader. Apple products already include VoiceOver that can be turned on and off. Give it a try and see what can make a site easier to navigate when it is on. JAWs is an application that works on Microsoft machines. 

Or try the copy and paste method. Copy the entire screen and paste into a word document. It should virtually transfer word for word. If you end up with squiggles and funny characters – it is not fully accessible.

If you really want a respected third party to ensure you are meeting the needs of your visitors, try WebAIM.org. They also have a free service called WAVE web accessibility evaluation tool that can give a quick once over and allow you to address errors that are identified.

Your local CIL can also offer demonstrations of assistive technologies and support. Inclusion means everyone has access to the world wide web!

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