AG Kaul Encourages Update to Americans with Disabilities Act to Improve Access to State, Local Government Websites and Mobile Apps
MADISON, Wis. –Attorney General Josh Kaul joined a coalition of 11 attorneys general encouraging the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to adopt proposed rules that would require state and local governmental websites and mobile applications to be more accessible to individuals with disabilities.
The coalition submitted a comment letter to the DOJ supporting proposed rules to update regulations under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which ensure no individual with a disability is excluded from participation in state or local government programs, services or activities.
“Everyone should be able to access available federal, state and local government resources,” said Attorney General Kaul. “In this technology-dependent era, ensuring that websites and mobile apps are accessible is an important part of providing equal access.”
The proposed standards include requiring code to allow a screen reader to accurately and efficiently navigate a web page, descriptive captions for photos and videos, high contrast colors and adjustable text sizes, among other requirements.
In their letter, the coalition highlights the intent in passing the ADA was to assure individuals with disabilities equal opportunities, full participation in their communities, independent living and economic self-sufficiency. The coalition also highlights the fact that public entities provide access to many services, programs and activities via government website or mobile apps. Reliance on technology – once considered a convenience – is now standard practice for many individuals seeking information or assistance from their state or local government.
Joining Attorney General Kaul in submitting the letter are the attorneys general of California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, and Rhode Island.