British Universities Film & Video Council

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Improving Digital Experience for the Disabled

Plans to improve public websites, upgrade IT equipment and provide better online content to suit the needs of disabled people have just been unveiled by Communications Minister, Ed Vaizey. Launching the eAccessibility Plan, the Minister announced a package of measures that aim to contribute to a more inclusive digital economy for people with specific needs.

Key points include:

  • improving technology and digital equipment to suit the needs of those with disabilities and tackling issues of affordability and availability of equipment (television, radio, computer) and software (such as Braille embossers, light signallers and screen readers);
  • Implementing a new regulatory framework to enable OFCOM to specify measures to ensure disabled people have equivalent choice and access to digital communications services as non-disabled consumers;
  • Improving the design of public sector websites to make them more accessible to disabled users;
  • Making previously inaccessible online and television content accessible to disabled users, such as e-books for those with a visual impairment;
  • Promoting awareness of the issues facing disabled groups in the digital economy to achieve a more inclusive society.

The plan will be implemented by the eAccessibility Forum, a group of over 60 experts from Government, industry and the voluntary sector who will work to explore issues surrounding e-accessibility so that better and more inclusive services can be developed for both business and consumer benefit.

The Action Plan will be a ‘live document’ updated quarterly to incorporate new developments and monitor progress. The aim is to reach a step-change in eAccessibility by the time of the Olympics and Paralympics in summer 2012.

To download a pdf of the document, click here.

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