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Re: It's Official - New Sec. 508 is out


From: Dona Patrick
Date: Feb 20, 2015 10:20AM

There were discussions earlier in the month about Section 508 not including
PDF files in the guidelines -- that there were techniques but no guidelines
in WCAG 2.0.

I have been reading through the proposed rule and see that PDF/UA is
mentioned a few times. This is good news (right?). I've tried to propose to
my company that we use PDF/UA as a standard and this would force us to.

Or am I reading it wrong?


On Wed, Feb 18, 2015 at 3:28 PM, Chagnon | PubCom < <EMAIL REMOVED> >

> OK, not fully out just yet, but the proposed rule to update the standards
> was announced just an hour ago.
> To view the details online, visit
> http://www.access-board.gov/guidelines-and-standards/communications-and-it/a
> bout-the-ict-refresh/overview-of-the-proposed-rule
> Here's what the US Access Board sent out today.
> --Bevi Chagnon
> Begin Quote:
> U.S. Access Board Proposes Updated ICT Accessibility Requirements
> The U.S. Access Board has released for public comment a proposed rule
> updating accessibility requirements for information and communication
> technology (ICT) in the federal sector covered by Section 508 of the
> Rehabilitation Act. The rule also would jointly update guidelines for
> telecommunications equipment subject to Section 255 of the Communications
> Act.
> "The Board's proposal is responsive to widespread changes and innovations
> in
> the IT and communication industries," states Sachin Dev Pavithran, Vice
> Chair of the Access Board. "It is important that the 508 Standards and 255
> Guidelines stay abreast of the ever-evolving technologies they cover so
> that
> accessibility for people with disabilities is properly addressed."
> The proposed rule updates various requirements to address fundamental
> shifts
> and trends in the market, such as the convergence of technologies and the
> increasingly multi-functional capabilities of products like smart phones.
> Another key goal of this update is to promote consistency with other
> requirements in the U.S. and abroad in order to improve accessibility and
> to
> facilitate compliance. A leading reference, the Web Content Accessibility
> Guidelines (WCAG), is incorporated into the rule and applied to web-based
> content as well as to offline documents and software. The Board is
> proposing
> other revisions that will harmonize the rule with voluntary consensus
> standards, including those issued by other countries and international
> bodies such as the European Commission due to the global nature of the ICT
> market.
> The proposed rule specifies the technologies covered and contains
> performance-based criteria as well as technical requirements for hardware,
> software, and support documentation and services. Access is addressed for
> all types of disabilities, including those pertaining to vision, hearing,
> color perception, speech, manual dexterity, reach, and strength. The
> proposed rule is based on recommendations from the Board's
> Telecommunications and Electronic and Information Technology Advisory
> Committee (TEITAC) which comprised a broad cross-section of stakeholders
> representing industry, disability groups, government agencies, and other
> countries. It also incorporates public feedback the Board received through
> the release of two advance drafts of the rule.
> "The significant input the Board has received from stakeholders and
> interested parties throughout this process is reflected in the proposed
> rule," notes Pavithran. "Such collective feedback is critical to getting
> things right in the final rule, and it is no different with the current
> proposal, which includes a host of questions the Board is posing to the
> public to gather additional information on various topics."
> Public comments on the rule, as well as on a preliminary assessment of its
> estimated costs and benefits, are due in 90 days. The Board also will hold
> public hearings on the rule in San Diego on March 5 and in Washington, DC
> on
> March 11. In addition, the Board will conduct a public webinar to review
> the
> proposal on March 31.
> Further information on this rulemaking, including a summary of the rule, is
> available on the Board's website or by contacting Timothy Creagan at (202)
> 272-0016 (v), (202) 272-0074 (TTY), or <EMAIL REMOVED> .
> > > >