Web Accessibility News

Criterion provides you with the most up to date articles about web accessibility, Section 508, WCAG and ADA web accessibility litigation. Check back monthly for the latest news and analysis!

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Federal ADA Title III Lawsuit Numbers Drop 15% for the First Half of 2020 But a Strong Rebound Is Likely

Businesses enjoyed a brief reprieve in ADA Title III lawsuits while the country was shut down, but the rest of the year will most likely be business as usual. In the first six months of 2020, 4,759 ADA Title III lawsuits were filed in federal court, as compared to 5,592 of such suits filed in the first six months of 2019, for a decrease of 15 percent during this period. This downtick is largely due to the significantly fewer filings in April and May of 2020, when most of the country was shut down…

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Blindness and sight loss to double by 2050

Blindness and severe vision impairment is predicted to affect almost 900 million people worldwide by 2050—up from around 338 million today, according to a new pre-print study accepted by The Lancet and highlighted on World Sight Day (8 October). Researchers led by Rupert Bourne, Professor of Ophthalmology at Anglia Ruskin University (ARU), examined more than 500 studies showing trends in prevalence of blindness and vision loss, allowing them to make forecasts about vision loss over the next three decades…

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USDA’s New Playbook Aims to Improve Digital User Experience

Long before the coronavirus pandemic, the federal government had made improving the customer experience of its services, especially its digital tools, a key priority. Indeed, the White House placed customer service high on its list of priorities, with “Improving Customer Experience with Federal Services” as a top cross-agency priority (CAP) goal in the President’s Management Agenda. Improving the customer experience is also at the heart of the Centers of Excellence the General Services Administration has been running to help agencies modernize their IT…

Long-term telework seen as key to retaining feds with disabilities

Federal employees in many agencies have spent the majority of this year working from home because of the coronavirus pandemic. This major shift in workplace culture has forced agencies to rethink a range of daily processes, including conducting virtual interviews with prospective hires and onboarding new employees without having them set foot in an office. Congress and agencies have also looked

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Lawsuit Filed Against WWE For Violation Of Americans With Disabilities Act

WWE has been served a lawsuit for denying equal access to its WWEShop website. Josue Romero, filed a lawsuit against WWE with the United States District Court Southern District Of New York On 10/6. According to the filing, “Romero is a visually-impaired and legally blind person who requires screen-reading software to read website content using his computer”. Romero’s lawsuit alleges shop.wwe.com “is not equally accessible to blind and visually-impaired consumers”. The suit states this violates the ADA(Americans With Disabilities Act)…

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Business owners in Denver hit with unexpected ADA lawsuits from out-of-state firm

When James Blanchard designed his winery and taproom in Denver’s Dairy Block two years ago, compliance was front of mind. “Making sure your entry doorways are wide enough, your table spacing is wide enough, I have clear pathways to the restroom,” said Blanchard, who owns Blanchard Family Wines with his brother. “We 100% want to be accessible, we want to be compliant, we want to be inclusive for all.” So it came as a surprise when he was summoned to court this year…

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Making our workforce more accessible to all during National Disability Employment Awareness Month

The U.S. Department of Labor has dedicated October as National Disability Employment Awareness Month. For my first column this month, I wanted to revisit the sentiment my predecessor and mentor Edythe Copeland reinforced — the importance of decreasing discrimination of all kinds in the workforce. She fought for that throughout her career and, as I’ve mentioned before, I’m committed to continuing her legacy. Earlier this year, Edythe covered diversity, inclusion and resources for employers…

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Digital access: Urgent need to include persons with disability

The realization that people with disabilities are often overlooked in access to digital technologies is not new. But it has of late come to the fore as the global pandemic has raged. The World Health Organisation highlights this in a brief urging awareness on the inequalities they may be facing during the pandemic, including accessing information. The organization defines a disabled person as anyone who has “a problem in body function or structure, an activity limitation, has a difficulty in executing a task or action; with a participation restriction”…

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OSU Study Says Universities Not Living Up to ADA

The Americans with Disabilities Act was passed by Congress in 1990 and signed into law by President George H.W. Bush. It was recognized at the time as the biggest piece of civil rights legislation since the Civil Rights Act of 1965. While it was thought that becoming “ADA-compliant” would take years and billions of dollars, probably few would have expected that it would take public universities as long as it has to get their recreational facilities in full compliance…

man sitting at wine cellar table in front of wine barrels

Out-of-state law firm blitzes companies in Colorado with “drive-by” ADA lawsuits

James Blanchard had just reopened his Denver winery this summer after being shut down for months because of COVID-19 when he got hit with a different kind of challenge — a surprise lawsuit alleging the website for his family business violated the Americans with Disabilities Act. The lawsuit said David Katt, a resident of Douglas County who is blind, couldn’t use the downtown winery’s website because it was not compatible with screen-reading programs that allow people who are visually impaired to navigate online…

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Amazon’s JoAnna Hunt Talks Her Passion For Accessibility And How Kindle Makes Reading Accessible To Everyone

When most people think of e-readers, they think of Amazon’s Kindle line. There certainly are competitors, but Kindle to the e-reader market holds the same cachet in terms of brand awareness as Kleenex does for facial tissues and Band-Aid does for band aids. And not only is the Kindle a family of bespoke devices, it’s also an app that runs on third-party platforms such as iOS and Android. The synonymy is well deserved for the most part. As products, Kindles are great: their e-ink screen technology is good, battery life is seemingly infinite, and Amazon’s trove of available titles is unparalleled…

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