Accommodation / Accessibility

 

Accessibility Policy

I. Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to establish guidelines for website/webpage accessibility and to ensure compliance with state and federal laws regarding equal access to websites/webpages and content for individuals with disabilities.

II. Background

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the 1998 amendment to the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 508) require that government websites/webpages eliminate barriers in information technology, and encourage development of technologies that will help achieve these goals. Under Section 508 offices, agencies and departments must give individuals with disabilities access to information that is comparable to the access available to others.

III. Scope

This policy applies to all websites/webpages maintained by the offices, agencies and departments of the County of Blair (hereinafter collectively referred to as “Departments”.)

IV. Policy

    1. The Departments are committed to providing the public, including individuals who use assistive technology, access to web-based information and services by using Section 508 design principles.
    2. The Departments are subject to and must comply with both Title II of the ADA and Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act. To the extent that there are inconsistencies between Title II and Section 508 regarding website/webpage compliance, Departments are advised to comply with the more stringent standards between the two.
        1. 1.  Departments are responsible for ensuring that all information posted to its website complies with accessibility standards, or that it makes provisions to supply the material in an alternate format.
        1. 2.  If a Department contracts to develop, maintain, or host websites/webpages, the Department will ensure that the contractor meets accessibility standards and that accessibility standards are addressed within the contract.
    3. Given the rapid pace of technological change, this Policy does not stipulate a specific set of design principles but strives to ensure that the most current criteria are used by adopting the “Web Standards and Guidelines – County of Blair” (hereafter referred to as the “Standards”). Departments are responsible for ensuring that staff/contractors that develop or publish materials to websites/webpages are familiar with these Standards. The Blair County Website Team has developed and will periodically review and update the Standards.
    4. All Department websites/webpages created or integrated after the effective date of this Policy will comply with this Policy.

V. Known Limitations

Individuals with (or without) disabilities access websites/webpages with widely varying sets of capabilities, software, and hardware. While this Policy does provide the ability for individuals with disabilities to access web-based information, this Policy does not include requirements for the production of every known accessibility need, due to known limitations on existing technology. There may be other circumstances, independent of technology that may limit accessibility of Department websites.

It is understood that creating accessible formats for large, complex documents (such as Environmental Impact Reports and reports containing complex tables and graphs), some historical documentation and graphical renderings and photographs maintained by the Department may be technologically unfeasible. In this case, Departments will be responsible for providing alternative methods of ensuring accessibility of this material. Department websites/webpages must provide information on how to contact the Department to request materials in an alternate format. See the Standards for suggested language to direct the reader in requesting an alternate format.

VI. Responsibilities

    1. Departments are responsible for implementing this Policy.
    2. Department web page developers, content providers and document authors are responsible for ensuring Department websites/webpages and content comply with this Policy. Agency web page editors or creators shall become familiar with the Standards for achieving accessibility and shall apply these principles in designing and creating any official Agency websites/webpages or content.
    3. The County of Blair Web Team is responsible for developing and maintaining the “Web Standards and Guidelines – County of Blair” (Standards.)
    4. The County of Blair Web Team is responsible for administering this Policy and for resolving any grievances related to this Policy.

VII. Compliance

Websites/webpages will regularly be reviewed for compliance with this policy by the County of Blair Website Team. Possible compliance issues arising from the review will be addressed.

VIII. Resources

County of Blair Accessibility Grievance Procedure - Under revision. See below.

Title II Grievance Form - Under revision. See below.

ADA Grievance Procedure

The County of Blair has an approved Grievance Procedure which is currently under review to add website requirements. If you have any questions about our current ADA policy, or have an ADA related grievance please contact:

Helen P. Schmitt
County Administrator

County of Blair
423 Allegheny Street, Suite 441-A
Hollidaysburg, PA 16648

phone (814)693-3030
fax (814) 693-3033