Deadline Fast Approaching for California Web Accessibility

July 1, 2019 is the deadline for all California state agencies to publicly certify their websites as compliant with WCAG 2.0 Level AA and Section 508.

Deadline Fast Approaching for California Web AccessibilityThen-Governor Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill 434 into law in October, 2017, creating Government Code section 11546.7. Agencies were given until the start of California state fiscal year 2019/2020 to comply. The law strengthens previous accessibility laws and regulations, for which compliance and enforcement were inconsistent.

California’s Department of Rehabilitation (DOR) developed a AB 434 Website Accessibility Toolkit to assist other agencies in complying with the new law. DOR also offers website and document accessibility training to state employees.

Going forward, state agencies will be required to re-certify their website’s accessibility every two years.

California celebrates the ADA 28th anniversay

California will host a free event celebrating the anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Signed into law in 1990, the ADA has been a driving force of disability equality, inclusion, and accessibility for 28 years.

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) 1990-2018

The day of learning, activities, and entertainment will take place at the State Capital, and is intended to generate public awareness and provide insight into the progress and continuing path forward for disability inclusion in California. For details visit the ADA Anniversary website.

PAC 3 released by Access for All

Access for All released PAC 3, the latest version of the free PDF Accessibility Checker, in December 2017. Access for All reports the following improvements:

  • Overview report can be exported as a barrier-free PDF.
  • Optimized accessibility of the user interface.
  • PAC is now available in English and German. More specifically, the language automatically depends on the language set in the operating system of your computer. If this is neither German nor English, PAC will be executed in the English version.
  • New “Artifacts” tab in the Logical Structure dialog box for quick viewing and review of all decorative items.
  • Additional attributes on the Properties tab in the Logical Structure dialog such as PrintField attributes, IsMap attribute, and ListNumbering attribute.
  • Another checkpoint in the category Logical structure”> “Structure elements”> Tables: Assignment of header cells”.

PAC 3 Screen Shot (click for full size image)

After using PAC 3 in parallel with PAC 2 for a few weeks, as far as I have been able to tell the test functionality is identical – with the exception of the new check for assignment of header cells. PAC 3 has an improved user interface, in my opinion, and unlike PAC 2 is itself fully accessible to assistive technology users.

The ability to produce a summary test report in accessible PDF format is a very welcome new feature. The Screen Reader Preview seems slightly improved, with images displayed smaller than in PAC 2. PAC 3 also seems more stable than PAC 2 – I tested a couple of files that crashed PAC 2 but not PAC 3. I have only detected one minor glitch in PAC 3 – the metrics (e.g. number of failed Content checkpoints) in the summary report are exactly double those in PAC 2 and in the PAC 3 detailed report.

In conclusion, PAC 3 is a welcome addition to my PDF accessibility toolbox. PAC 3 – and also the older PAC 1.3 and PAC 2 – can be downloaded from Access for All (

July 26, 2015 is the 25th anniversary of the ADA!

ADA 25th AnniversaryJuly 26, 2015 is the Silver Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), signed into law by President George Herbert Walker Bush on July 26, 1990.

To celebrate this historic milestone, the ADA National Network offers an ADA Anniversary Tool Kit for use by the public and the media. The Tool Kit includes:

“On the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, I (name) will celebrate and recognize the progress that has been made by reaffirming the principles of equality and inclusion and recommitting my efforts to reach full ADA compliance.

NOW THEREFORE, I (name) do hereby reaffirm to continue to work toward full ADA compliance.”

The ADA is a wide-ranging civil rights law that prohibits discrimination based on disability. It affords similar protections against discrimination to Americans with disabilities as the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination based on race, religion, sex, national origin, and other characteristics. The ADA also assures equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities for access to businesses, employment, transportation, state and local government programs and services, and telecommunications.