With the Ontario Government requiring websites to adhere to a strict set of rules, businesses must get their website built by a web development firm experienced in executing accessibility and following the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.0) which we will talk more about below.
Accessibility is an extremely important aspect of websites that is commonly overlooked. Can every user of your site find the information they need?
Recent changes in legislation are requiring websites to be accessible. For example, in Ontario your site and its content must follow the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.0) as required by the Accessibility Standard for Information and Communications and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disability Act (AODA).
The goal is to make web content more accessible to people who have disabilities. This may include improving contrast of colours for readability or using proper tags that will allow links, text, images and other media forms to be effectively described to a user. Web development that is accessible also benefits those that you might not think it is intended for such as any person who simply has a hard time seeing defined colours on a screen.
We have extensive experience in building accessible websites and we tend to work with WCAG 2.0 Level AAA while other developers/designers may stick with the bare minimum they can get away with or work with a third party free platform that does not support accessibility.
Failure to comply under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disability Act (AODA) can result in significant fines such as:
- $50 000 per day for a person and unincorporated organizations
- $100 000 per day for corporations
- $50 000 per day for directors and officers
When Does AODA Start?
Right now! Most new websites are legally required to be accessible in Ontario starting from 2014. The government's goal in the upcoming years is to have ALL websites accessible in Ontario.