Public sector websites should be accessible to the blind: EBU

[caption id="attachment_2399" align="alignright" width="250"]EC proposals “too little, too late” EC proposals “too little, too late”[/caption]

The European Commission made suggestions following a complaint by the European Blind Union (EBU) that public sector websites were not accessible for blind and partially sighted people, but the EBU has said the proposals are “too little, too late” and leave out the vast majority of public services.

Currently, less than 5 per cent of public websites are found to be accessible to blind and partially sighted people, which is of great concern as more and more public services are shifted online.

There is no mandatory requirement to ensure the accessibility of websites delivering essential services and information about, among other things, schools, transport, banking, housing, ” EBU has warned, with union president Wolfgang Angermann adding that “we wanted equal access to all public websites and websites delivering basic services to citizens… Drastic action is needed to ensure that people with sight loss are no longer treated as second class citizens. This is too little too late – we are now calling on members of the European Parliament to work with us to ensure that the right to access information set out in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities is finally upheld.”

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