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RE: Technical baseline clause revisited?

From: Katie Haritos-Shea GMAIL <ryladog@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 24 Aug 2016 13:22:08 -0400
To: "'Karen Lewellen'" <klewellen@shellworld.net>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <002901d1fe2c$0b49ff30$21ddfd90$@gmail.com>

WCAG 2, as a technical standard, cannot mandate human rights legal requirements. 

It is the laws in counties that point to and require the usage of particular standards. 

The requirement to 'not mandate specific assistive technologies' for use by users with disabilities, would be covered by the human or disability rights laws in Ontario. I am sorry I am not familiar enough with the AODA, it is possible that such a clause exists. 

It seems clear to me that organizations cannot mandate what you must use. But I do not know if that is a provision of your laws. They certainly should be clearly identifying what AT they do support in their Accessibility Statements. And, they cannot claim conformance to WCAG 2 if they do not have some sort of identified accessibility support.

​​​​Here is the definition of Accessibility Supported from the WCAG 2 standard:

" Accessibility Supported
Using a technology in a way that is accessibility supported means that it works with assistive technologies (AT) and the accessibility features of operating systems, browsers, and other user agents. Technology features can only be relied upon to conform to WCAG 2.0 success criteria if they are used in a way that is "accessibility supported". Technology features can be used in ways that are not accessibility supported (do not work with assistive technologies, etc.) as long as they are not relied upon to conform to any success criterion (i.e., the same information or functionality is also available another way that is supported). "

Also Conformance Claim number 4 from the WCAG 2 standard says:

" 4. Only Accessibility-Supported Ways of Using Technologies: Only accessibility-supported ways of using technologies are relied upon to satisfy the success criteria. Any information or functionality that is provided in a way that is not accessibility supported is also available in a way that is accessibility supported. (See Understanding accessibility support.)"

Hopefully someone else who lknows more about AODA will chime in 'not mandate specific assistive technologies' for use by users with disabilities, if it exists in Ontarian law.

* katie *
Katie Haritos-Shea 
Principal ICT Accessibility Architect
Chair, W3C WAI (Web Accessibility Initiative) Interest Group (@w3c_wai)
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-----Original Message-----
From: Karen Lewellen [mailto:klewellen@shellworld.net] 
Sent: Tuesday, August 23, 2016 11:19 AM
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Subject: Technical baseline clause revisited?

Good morning everyone,
Before I start let me express my appreciation  to each of you for your commitment to inclusion.  At the end of the day the resources alone at least for me  fortifies my hope.
I have what I trust is a simple question,  although  the situation is a tad complex.
A couple of years back at least we discussed the technical baseline clause, how some companies use this to avoid compliance  even with basic things like keyboard functioning by stating they use say jaws, You must as well.
My understanding then was that a company cannot place such requirements on
  the general public.
Can anyone document for me if this remains the case?
I have one of those situations that if I used what the company is claiming I must use...it would actually do me physical harm.
so I want to share with the mediator that making such requirements violates WACG in general.  I am in Ontario and was told privately that the AODA  incorporates WACG into its standards.  The Ontario Human Rights Code has a greater level of mandate  undue hardship,  meaning regardless the company is violating the latter, but they are claiming the former.
Received on Wednesday, 24 August 2016 17:22:38 UTC

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