Leveling the Playing Field: Newly Proposed ICT Standards

On Feb. 18th, the United States Access Board released a proposed rule that updates many of the current standards related to the accessibility of information and communication technology (ICT), also referred to as ICT Refresh. The updated standards and guidelines are intended to more accurately reflect the rapidly evolving e-commerce industry and web-based services and technology of recent years. The existing Section 508 standards related to ICT accessibility were issued back in 2000. A lot has changed since then.

To put it in perspective, the first iPhone was only brought to market in 2007, and the first Android smartphone only hit the market in 2008. The proposed ICT Refresh also includes an update to the Section 255 guidelines, which require telecommunications products and services to be made accessible to people with disabilities. The ICT Refresh seeks to harmonize with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, WCAG 2.0, the recommendation of the World Wide Web Consortium, W3C.

Two public hearings will be held on the proposed rule. The first hearing takes place at the CSUN Conference in San Diego on March 5th. The second hearing takes place in Washington D.C. on March 11th. AMAC and AccessGA will continue to provide updated information about the new proposals.

To learn more about ICT Refresh, visit Proposed Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Standards and Guidelines.

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