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Re: Universities Legal Web Accessibility Update


From: Jason Taylor-UsableNet
Date: Dec 10, 2003 1:32PM

Hello Kelly

I am not sure if this is bang-on what you are looking for but yesterdays
cast.org news letter had a link to:

A Concise Summary of State Laws Pertaining to the Provision of Accessible
Materials for K-12 Students with Print Disabilities

Jason, UsableNet

> Thanks for this information. Does any one have similar updates on the
> applicability of federal law to state government websites?
> Thanks,
> Kelly
> -----------------------------
> Kelly Hokkanen
> Director of Creative Services
> InforME: Information Resource of Maine
> (207)621-2600 x28
> www.maine.gov
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Jason Taylor-UsableNet [mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ]
> Sent: Monday, December 08, 2003 12:50 PM
> Subject: Re: Universities Legal Web Accessibility Update
> In order to follow up some postings with regard the legal position of
> Universities with regard to Section 508 and Web Accessibility. I
> approached Ken. S. Nakata of The US DOJ. In short, it seems that the
> provision of Section 508 effecting Universities due to Tech Act funding
> was wrong and we apologize for this. My short e-mail discussion with Ken
> is below.
> -----------------
> 1. "If I am creating and maintaining web content for students and
> faculty of a public university which Disabilities act would most likely
> apply to my web content?"
> 504 (if federally-funded) and title II of the ADA.
> 2. "Does Section 508 of the Rehabilitations act apply to me in the above
> scenario - if so when and why, and if not when and why?"
> No. (when ask for clarity on this, the response was "508 doesn't apply.
> The stuff from Cynthia is incorrect, because that was a former (and
> unsupportable) position articulated by the Department of Education. We
> had to get them to change that".)
> 3. What types of access to web content should a university consider to
> satisfy their legal requirements under any laws you outline above?
> First, it's probably essential to provide access to alternative sources
> of information... e.g. a person answering email or the phone regarding
> web page content. Doesn't necessarily have to be 24/7, but the delay in
> response shouldn't be unreasonable (of course, that depends on what it
> is that's required). As far as design standards, either 508 or WAI
> would go a long way to meeting 504/ada obligations in most circumstances
> (but not all as these standards do not aid all forms of disabilities).
> ------------------
> Ken is referring to the below 508 statement on Cynthia's site being out
> dated.
> [12] Section 508 was originally added to the Rehabilitation Act in
> 1986.