Accessibility in the News— 09/30/16
This issue of Accessibility in the News (AITN) covers several travel stories influenced by World Tourism Day’s ‘Universal Accessibility’ theme. We also have both universal accessibility shortfalls (and advances) in government and education, with community banks seeing a rise in accessibility-related demand letters. The first autonomous car also makes its debut.
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Eligible but got nothing: Hundreds of thousands of people with disabilities blocked from college aid
9/20 | Source: The Hechinger Report
Wendy Thompson always knew she wanted her son to go to college, but she didn’t realize so many people would disagree. Her son was born with cerebral palsy, a disease that has him using a wheelchair, but has little impact on his academic abilities. He graduated from high school with a Regents diploma in 2013 — a feat accomplished by only 18 percent of students with disabilities in New York City that year, compared to 70 percent of students without disabilities.
But when Thompson met with a counselor from the state agency that is supposed to help people with disabilities get training or a degree that will lead to a job, the counselor refused to sign off on her son’s plan to go to community college. That meant he wouldn’t get wheelchair-accessible transportation, tuition help or voice-activated software from the agency — all of which he qualified for under federal law…
74% of Orissa government websites not disabled-friendly
9/26 | Source: OrissaPOST
A staggering 74 per cent Orissa government websites pertaining to different departments are still not friendly to the physically challenged who face several hassles while using such platforms. A close analysis of all the 38 state government departmental websites by Orissa POST reveals that merely 10 state government department websites offer the physically challenged users some tools for better access to their contents and services.
These 10 disabled-friendly websites have been assisting their users through added services like screen readers, text magnifier, differential optimised colour option among others which the remaining 28 websites from the state fail to facilitate…
Make Your Website Accessible in 10 Minutes
9/26 | Source: WhoIsHostingThis?
Website accessibility is a huge issue, but one most people don’t think much about. Imagine for a moment that you have limited mobility. Maybe you can’t use a mouse, and the only way you can navigate a computer is by tapping a single keyboard key at a time.
Try it out. Click the arrow buttons to scroll up and down. Use tab to move from one link to the next. Click the enter key to follow a link. It’s not as easy as rolling your mouse wheel or swiping your tablet, but by using just those four keys you can navigate everything on this site. Can the same be said of your own website?…
Accessibility in Air Travel: Industry Stakeholders Offer Solutions for Pax With Disabilities
9/27 | Source: apex
Awareness of mobility issues and ‘hidden’ disabilities, such as autism, dementia, hearing loss, poor eyesight and blindness, is rising, and real strides are being made by airlines, airports and manufacturers to make air travel more accessible for all. In honor of this year’s World Tourism Day theme – universal accessibility – APEX Media is looking at how stakeholders are working together to promote inclusivity in the air travel industry.
Like shops that post “Sorry, we’re open” notices in their front windows, the facilities and accommodations in airports and on airlines often send mixed messages to air travelers who have reduced mobility and special needs. I recently got a taste of that during a morning spent plodding around Seattle-Tacoma International Airport in the age simulation suit used by architects in the aviation division at Corgan to help think through creative designs for accessible airport spaces…
Disabled man gets license, shows driverless tech’s potential
9/27 | Source: Daily Herald
Former Indy Racing League driver Sam Schmidt has done a lot in the 16 years since an accident left him paralyzed from the neck down. He runs a racing team and a foundation. He’s raced a sailboat using his chin. But the man who raced in the Indianapolis 500 hasn’t been able to drive around his neighborhood – until now.
On Wednesday, Schmidt is set to receive the first license restricted to an autonomous vehicle in the U.S. The license allows him to drive on Nevada roads in his specially modified Corvette, which requires no hands on its steering wheel or feet on its pedals. Schmidt uses head motions to control the car’s direction…
Online travel portal to launch travel guide for the disabled
9/27 | Source: The Times of India City
In keeping with the World Tourism Day 2016 theme – ‘Tourism for All – Promoting Universal Accessibility’ – an online travel portal for persons with disabilities will unveil the first in a series of travel guides on Goa for wheelchair users.
‘The Emoja Guide to Goa – Best of Wheelchair Accessibility’ for 2016-17 offers details of accessible hotels, restaurants, tourist spots, festivals, including an accessible weekend itinerary for wheelchair users. The guide also provides wheelchair users with information about availability of ramps, accessible washrooms and wide entrance doors among other specifications at these places and an accessibility map to Goa to ensure persons with disabilities enjoy a stress-free holiday. Facilities available for those arriving by flight and train are also elaborated on. “We want to prove Goa can be accessible to wheelchair users and are willing to work with places to make them more accessible,” Umoja CEO Yeshwant Holkar said. “We’ll also release guides for the visually impaired and auditory impaired, to help them plan holidays to Goa,” he added…
People worldwide are invited to map accessibility in tourism
9/27 | Source: West-Welfare Society Territory
Join “MapMyDay” – a global social event for more accessibility! We need your support! Because steps are a daily barrier for millions of people worldwide who are traveling – whether they use a wheelchair, a walking aid or a stroller. The event will kick off on World Tourism Day. Help out with a few clicks and mark places in your neighborhood on the online map Wheelmap.org as to whether they are wheelchair accessible or not. Let’s do this together and gather as many places as possible!…
9/27 | Source: The Citizen 100
City staff have added further upgrades to Ginter’s Park to make it more accessible. After Ginter’s trail was paved in the spring, Spinal Cord Injury B.C. had a few more suggestions. Mainly, SCIBC told the city that gates through the trail made it unpassable for people using mobility devices. The group gathered along the one kilometer of trail last week to mark the second launch, now that the city has opened gates and installed bollards, and made improvements to the parking area to enhance the accessibility…
Canadians have their say on an Accessible Canada in Whitehorse, Iqaluit and Yellowknife
9/27 | Source: Yahoo Finance
This past week, the Government of Canada held public sessions in Whitehorse, Iqaluit and Yellowknife as part of the consultation process to inform planned accessibility legislation. The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities, is leading consultations on the accessibility barriers Canadians face in their daily lives, as well as listening and engaging with Canadians on what the Government of Canada can do to address these issues.
Next stops for public sessions include Regina, Saskatchewan, on September 28; Winnipeg, Manitoba, on October 3; and Edmonton, Alberta, on October 7. Canadians can pre-register at firstname.lastname@example.org, or just present themselves at the time and place of the public session…
Students and staff tag team the issue of accessibility
9/27 | Source: The Oakland Post
Student Congress and the Office of Disability Support Services offer temporary fixes and promised lasting change for campus accessibility. The issue of university accessibility has changed from a campaign trail promise to Oakland University Student Congress (OUSC) policy. And in the time since, the efforts of both the Office of Disability Support Services (DSS) and OUSC have either been actualized or ensured.
OUSC President Zack Thomas brought the issue of accessibility to the forefront of his campaign last fall. Among other things, he promised the partially dilapidated amenities to be updated, and ensured that no one would have to wait longer than needed to find an accessible bathroom…
New LCA! Research Report Published: Exploring Issues in Employment, Accessibility and Inclusion in The Screen-Based Industries
9/27 | Source: Nordicity
Lights, Camera, Access! (LCA!) today announced the launch of #ScreenAccessON, a new research report that delivers a compelling, current look at issues in employment, accessibility and inclusion for Canadians with disabilities in the film, television and digital media industries.
Funded in part by the Ontario Media Development Corporation (OMDC), and presented by globally recognized analysts Nordicity, #ScreenAccessON explores the experiences of a diverse cross-section of persons with disabilities (PWD) working in Ontario , one of Canada’s busiest hubs for screen-based media production. Data was collected during the Spring/Summer of 2016, and establishes an important, inaugural baseline on attitudes, challenges, and opportunities for advancement in these vital, high-volume industries…
PATA upgrades website with universal accessibility
9/28 | Source: TravelDailyNews
On the occasion of World Tourism Day 2016, under the theme of ‘Tourism for All – Promoting Universal Accessibility’, the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) is pleased to announce the relaunch of www.PATA.org designed for universal accessibility.
“As we recognise and celebrate the vital contribution that travel and tourism contributes to the world, both socially and economically, we understand that both the public and private sector must share the responsibility in affording all people the opportunities of experiencing the incredible beauty and diversity of our world, regardless of race, colour, religion, gender, age and disability,” said PATA CEO Dr. Mario Hardy. “We have taken the first steps in making sure all people may access the valuable information and insights available on our website and we hope to be an example for other organisations to follow.”…
Kennedy: Accessibility needs to be a priority in University planning
9/28 | Source: The Rocky Mounty Collegian
What’s the most challenging aspect of college life? If you polled 1000 students at random, many would argue that exams, professors, or all of the studying required is the most difficult. But what about simply getting around campus? What if something as routine as accessing classrooms or other campus resources was one of your biggest challenges?
Such is the reality for college students with disabilities, who Disability Studies Quarterly estimates account for as much as nine percent of all college students in the United States. While outright discrimination against individuals with disabilities has been outlawed since the 1970s by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), some argue that the college experience for those with physical and mental disabilities is still an unnecessarily challenging experience, despite universities’ effort to accommodate them…
Federal Website Lawsuits Top 100 As New Wave Of Demand Letters Hits Community Banks
9/28 | Source: JDSupra Business Advisor
The number of federal lawsuits alleging inaccessible websites continues to increase, along with the number of law firms filing them. Businesses need advice now on how to manage risk in this chaotic environment.
As we predicted, website accessibility lawsuits and threatened claims have become big business for some aspects of the plaintiffs’ bar. More law firms are filing lawsuits or sending demand letters alleging individuals with disabilities are denied access to a business’s goods and services due to inaccessible websites than ever. The number of lawsuits filed in federal court since the beginning of 2015 has surged to 106 as of September 21, 2016. Retailers have been the most popular targets, followed by restaurant and hospitality companies…
School Bells Ring in Brave New World of Digital Compliance
9/29 | Source: The Legal Intelligencer
As students settle in to their physical and virtual seats for the semester, administrators at public and private institutions of higher education are already scurrying to prepare for the next academic year. This is true from both a course planning as well as internal compliance perspective. An area currently meriting extra attention is digital and web access for students with disabilities.
The clock is ticking, because in July 2010 the Department of Justice (DOJ) released a notice of proposed rulemaking for website accessibility under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), 42 U.S.C. Section 12101. After delays, the rules are anticipated in 2018. This impending regulatory change, as well as two recent actions involving edX and Harvard University over the accessibility of online course offerings, has many schools contemplating appropriate digital accessibility plans…
Accessibility to the French is spelled “elevators”
9/30 | Source: West-Welfare society Territory
The majority of French people equate elevators with accessibility. For persons with disabilities but also for the elderly. Not to forget for strollers, suitcases or grocery bags. And for them guaranteeing elevator use to as many citizens as possible needs to be a priority.
These data were revealed by a survey conducted by Ipsos, a global market research and consulting firm with headquarters in France, together with the Fédération des ascenseurs (French trade association for the elevator industry professionals).The surveys indicated that the installation of elevators in public places such as: schools, offices, transportation hubs, hospitals, airports, etc. is considered an urgent need…
Disability Connection makes tours accessible without leaving home
9/30 | Source: SunHerald
There’s a way to tour the art galleries, historic homes and museums on the Coast without ever leaving the living room. The Gulf Coast Heritage Tours program was unveiled Thursday before an invited crowd of business people at the Knight Nonprofit Center in Gulfport.
Through a grant awarded by the Department of Marine Resources to Disability Connection, an organization dedicated to providing social support and awareness for the disabled, 134 heritage sites across six South Mississippi counties can be toured online through the disabilityconnection.org website…
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