The Internet for All
We have an obligation to make inclusive design one of our design principles. No user should be excluded from accessing content on the basis of disability.
All content interfaces are required to be compliant with The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This page will provide resources and guidelines to help designers, developers and business owners meet the Sears Holdings Corporation Web Accessibility Policy standards. As a starting point, our web pages should aim to meet Level AA of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0. We have also outlined coding standards and guidelines to assist developers.
To be compliant with The Americans With Disabilities Act regarding Websites a person with a disability must be able to acquire the same information, engage in the same interactions, and enjoy the same services as a person without a disability, and be able to do so in an equally effective manner, with equivalent ease of use. Information and services must be made available at the same time to a person with a disability as to a person without a disability.
The Major Categories of Disability Types
When a website is correctly built and maintained, all users can be accommodated without decreasing the usability. To be functionally accessible your web resource must consider the follow major categories of disability:
- Visual: use by people who may have severe or moderate visual impairment or people who may be colorblind
- Auditory: use by people who may be deaf or hard of hearing
- Motor/Mobility: use by people who may have motor disabilities
- Cognitive/Intellectual: use by people who may have cognitive disabilities
Three requirements of ADA Compliance
- Technical – Make sure the coding of a website, software, operating systems, etc. is compatible with assistive technologies.
- Functional – Ensure that in addition to the technical coding, the entire system is usable by someone with a disability.
- Support – Make sure that support documents and alternative information is also accessible by people with disabilities.
If a project doesn’t meet all three of these requirements, then it is not legally compliant.
- Intro to web accessibility: http://www.w3.org/WAI/intro/accessibility.php
- Nielsen Normal Group Usability Guidelines for Accessible Web Design: http://www.nngroup.com/reports/usability-guidelines-accessible-web-design/
- Accessibility Standards for Developers: Section 508 Checklist http://webaim.org/standards/508/checklist
- Accessibility Valet: allows you to check Web pages against either Section 508 or W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) accessibility compliance.
- Color Oracle: free color blindness stimulator for Windows, Mac and Linux.
- VoiceOver for OSX and iOS: Gesture and voice based screen reader allows visual and motor impaired user to use their computers and iPhones.
- WebAnywhere: browser-based web application that works similarly to screen readers to see how a web page is read and navigated by assistive technologies.
- Webaim Color Contrast Checker: a quick tool to check the ADA compliance of a foreground and background color.