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Re: Grass Roots WAI

From: Al Gilman <asgilman@access.digex.net>
Date: Tue, 24 Feb 1998 08:41:56 -0500 (EST)
Message-Id: <199802241341.IAA14826@access1.digex.net>
To: chris.marston@worldnet.att.net (Christopher Marston)
Cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
to follow up on what Christopher Marston said:

> To get us started, here's a short list of what I have so far:
> 1. Official city page advertising its use of WAI guidelines
> 2. Work with chamber of commerce to promote use of WAI
> guidelines by businesses with internet (e.g. Create COC Award,
> make use of WAI guidelines an accreditation standard, etc.)
> 3. Work with ISPs, Web Designers located in city to promote WAI
> guidleines.

> Any ideas that would flesh out what I've suggested or, even
> better, that are entirely new would be great.

Number one, connect with grassroots, consumer-controlled
organizations that are people with disabilities in Alexandria
find worth belonging to, and work with them.  We can help you
with the "how" once you learn from them "what" your goals should
be.

Is there an economic development office in Alexandria?  Don't
stop with the Chamber of Commerce.  Alexandria is the capital of
the associations industry.  Team up with the Asociation of
Associations to develop and maintain the definitive courseware
unit on how Associations can capitalize on the Web.  Their
Internet presence, a coordinated program of Web publishing,
accepting questions via email, etc., can make them more effective
and less costly to run.  This is critical.  The Associations
industry as we know it absolutely needs to re-tool to capitalize
on digital communications and information technology or it will
go elsewhere to people who have figured out how to do that.
Making information accessible to all is one lesson in this
program.  Associations are an industry where sharing information
is the name of the game.  If we can get the associations industry
tooled up with broadly accessible information technology, we can
reach anybody.

One of the products that associations typically deliver to their
members is tutorial literature dealing with "compliance" issues.
The accessibility of Website information is going to be one of
those compliance issues that their members need to deal with.
Association after association is going to need to know about this
topic to inform its membership.  Many of those associations are
Alexandria taxpayers.  Make sure it is easy for the associations
to get their customers the straight scoop.

You don't have to invent this expertise out of whole cloth.  In
Alexandria you also have advocacy resources.  I believe that the
NIB is located there.  Find your local resources as well as those
[associations] who need this information.  You make the
connections, and watch it happen.

Al Gilman
Received on Tuesday, 24 February 1998 08:41:59 GMT

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