News from Northwest ADA Center – Idaho
2,352 Web accessibility lawsuits were filed in 2021. That’s a 14% jump from 2020, partly because the courts were closed during the early part of the pandemic. There is increased awareness of the need to provide equal access to websites. So much word being done virtually in the past two years exposed a number that were not accessible. Many businesses quickely converted to online sales during the pandemic, a trend which is continuing. These sales sites can lack in accessibility features that render them unreadable to a screen reader. Menus, photos of products etc. are posted in inaccessible formats such as pdf’s or images lacking alt text.
The most common complaints were from consumer goods, retail and services. Apparel, durables and beauty was second folled by food, beverage, and tobacco. At the end of the list is health & medical, something that went virtual for the first time last year.
Third party accessibility overlays by AudioEye and AccessiBe were specifically targeted as not being accessible because they change the user experience by overriding or adding to the existing code.
What you take away from this data may depend on how it impacts you and your business. For some the high levels of lawsuits may serve as a reminder of the real legal impact of inaccessibility. It may also prompt exploration and acrion related to the vast benefits of the digital world in business today. Access to websites and digital platforms is essential for employment, education, and independent living. For businesses, accessibility also helps reduce legal risk
We believe everyone should have access to the important information available online. The full report and data can be found on Accessibility.com
For more information about the ADA contact:
Dana Gover, MPA, and ACTCP Certification, ADA Training and Technical Assistance Coordinator
For more information about ADA Technical Assistance visit the NW ADA Center Idaho website: nwadacenter.org/idaho
Phone: Voice and Text 208-841-9422
Idaho Relay Service: 7