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Re: ADA print requirements for PDF and other documents


From: Philip Kiff
Date: Feb 19, 2022 8:29AM

Hi Joel,

I'm not sure of the best resources in relation to the ADA, or of the
status of this in the United States.

Generally, I don't think there are the same internationally recognized
guidelines or standards for print documents as there are for digital
documents. It is hard to create clear rules that apply perfectly to all
printed documents - and it is technically not feasible to generate
automated tests for such rules with current technology.

But here are two references that may nevertheless help you.

In the UK, there is the  UK Association for Accessible Formats (UKAAF),
who produce some guidance on "Clear and Large Print" documents:

Where I live in Canada, folks often reference the "Clear Print
Guidelines" from the CNIB (Canadian National Institute for the Blind):
This is shorter and less detailed than the UKAAF documents. A link to a
PDF version is available at the end of that CNIB page, but I don't think
the PDF version contains more info than what already appears on that page.

Neither of these should be treated as hard-and-fast rules that
absolutely define accessible documents. In a few areas, I personally
feel that the advice above may not  necessarily be appropriate to all
target audiences of printed materials that I am sometimes directly
involved in producing. But that is part of the challenge of print
materials. Print materials are the ultimate in restrictive format: once
you print it, that's exactly what you've got - there's no re-flowing or
reformatting of the pages on-the-fly. So it's hard to imagine a single
print version of anything that would be suitable for all possible users.

When considering document design in the source software, it can be
helpful to design in such a way that you will be able to generate a
large print or other specific format on-demand without needing to do a
full re-design of the document. The best way to do this will depend on
the authoring/publishing software and on the nature of the document
itself. I have designed technical documents in Word that could be
reformatted into Large Print simply by removing column settings and
changing the default font size of a couple styles.


Philip Kiff
D4K Communications

On 2022-02-19 06:40, <EMAIL REMOVED> wrote:
> Hi all,
> I'm looking for ADA or business print guidelines for accessible documents
> like PDF.
> In researching, I've seen a lot of documentation on how to make these
> documents digitally accessible, but none on physical accessibility for a
> paper document.
> Please share your thoughts and resources.
> Thank you,
> Joel Isaac