CANADIAN DOCUMENT ACCESSIBILITY COMPLIANCE

Understand why it matters to your business.

WEBSITE ACCESSIBILITY

According to WCAG 2.0 Accessibility Standards, it became the law for any organization in Ontario with 50 or more employees to ensure that any newly created page on their website, or the entire website, if created after Jan 1st, 2014 be level A compliant with the WCAG 2.0 Guidelines other than criteria 1.2.4 (captions) and 1.2.5 (pre-recorded audio descriptions).

As of Jan 1st, 2021, all content posted after Jan 1st, 2012 must conform with WCAG 2.0 level AA other than criteria 1.2.4 (captions) and 1.2.5 (pre-recorded audio descriptions).

This applies to all new content on a website, including all downloadable or viewable documents such as pdf’s, Word documents, Powerpoint, etc. It does not currently apply to pre-recorded audio or captions as per criteria 1.2.4 and 1.2.5 in the WCAG 2.0 Guidelines.

Though it is not a requirement for organizations of less than 50 employees to meet the standard at this time, or employees that are not in Ontario, WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) is a global initiative and many organizations are choosing to meet the requirement anyway as it benefits relationships with the many locations and businesses that are required to meet it.

Over the next few years, this will become increasingly important as older generations are using the internet more than ever and younger generation are aging themselves and will request or require accessibility compliance.

The section above outlines the requirements for accessibility plans, policies and more but may not be applicable to your organization. Some elements are required for public sector only and if you are a small organization of under 50 employees for example, some elements apply to only large organizations at this time. If you would like more information on the non-website based requirements, please inquire with us and we can provide them.

Not sure where to start? Contact us and we will help you understand the new accessibility requirements.

DOCUMENT ACCESSIBILITY

Making a document fully accessible and compliant requires additional manual effort. A well thought out structure must be implemented in order to guide assistive technology through the correct order of the document and convey information the way it was intended.

Send us the existing PDF document file you want to have accessible and we will make sure that your PDF is compliant with PDF/UA and WCAG 2.0 standards.

Here is the checklist we use to ensure your PDFs are compliant.

  • PROPER DOCUMENT STRUCTURE

    • Enable reading by means of text flow:
      To ensure your document is being identified in the correct reading sequence.
    • Artifact content:
      Moving layout graphics as well as headers and footers to the background so it is not read by software.
    • Add correct tags to all text elements
    • Allocate structurally correct headings (H1-H6)
    • Mark each paragraph as single paragraph
    • Mark listings as (interlaced) lists
    • Add bookmarks for easier navigation
    • Define internal and external references (clickable links and indexes)
    • Add correct assignments of foot notes.
  • DESCRIPTIVE TEXT TO IMAGES AND GRAPHICS

    • Add alternative texts to charts and images according to your desires.
    • Add field labels to form fields (defining rows, data cells and header cells).
  • DEFINING TABLES

    • Define table headers for your data table
    • Add field labels to form fields (defining rows, data cells and header cells).
  • APPLYING PROPER DOCUMENT SETTINGS

    • Font embedding to ensure fonts complies with international standards and can be read by software
    • Set a natural language within the document
    • Define language changes within the document
    • Adding additional Metadata
    • Define security settings such that they don’t block assistive technologies
    • Set a proper document title and author.

This applies to you if your website, website pages or documents available on your website were created after Jan. 1st, 2014.

If you are unsure whether your website or documents on your website meet the requirements, please contact us. We can perform an audit on the content in question and help you make the required changes to become compliant.

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