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RE: Web Accessibility Myths and The Kynn Challenge (was:

From: Waddell, Cynthia <cynthia.waddell@ci.sj.ca.us>
Date: Tue, 26 Oct 1999 11:02:28 -0700
Message-ID: <3EC0FC2EAE6AD1118D5100AA00DCD8830345AA57@sj-exchange.ci.sj.ca.us>
To: "'Scott Luebking'" <phoenixl@netcom.com>, charles@w3.org, jonathan@signbrowser.free-online.co.uk, mburks952@worldnet.att.net
Cc: kynn-hwg@idyllmtn.com, w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
I highly recommend that you read my paper "The Growing Digital Divide in
Access for People with Disabilities:  Overcoming Barriers to Participation."
It was commissioned for President Clinton's first national conference on the
digital economy and provides a legal update on access to electronic and
information technology.  Please take a look at the discussion impacting
universities and libraries.  Ever since Section 504 of the Rehabilitation
Act of 1973, universities that have computer labs have been required to
provide specialized computers so that students with disabilities have equal
access.  It quickly became obvious that a second layer of accessibility was
needed when the computers equipped for students with disabilities could not
access the internet.  The first ADA case was filed against a university for
failing to provide screenreaders for the computer.  We then saw that even if
the computer stations were properly equipped, they could not access the
internet if the web pages were not designed to be accessible.  For a full
discussion of the legal requirements for universities, please see my paper
at http://www.aasa.dshs.wa.gov/access/waddell.htm.

Cynthia D. Waddell

Cynthia D. Waddell   
ADA Coordinator
City Manager Department
City of San Jose, CA USA
801 North First Street, Room 460
San Jose, CA  95110-1704
(408)971-0134 TTY
(408)277-3885 FAX

-----Original Message-----
From: Scott Luebking [mailto:phoenixl@netcom.com]
Sent: Sunday, October 24, 1999 2:24 PM
To: charles@w3.org; jonathan@signbrowser.free-online.co.uk;
mburks952@worldnet.att.net; phoenixl@netcom.com
Cc: kynn-hwg@idyllmtn.com; w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Subject: Re: Web Accessibility Myths and The Kynn Challenge (was:


Companies are in a bind because of software developers.  Do they choose
and support software because it best fits the IT needs of the company or
do they choose less appropriate software because some disabled employees
find it easier to use?  A number of companies are choosing software
because of IT needs and the use of that software becomes part of the job
requirements.  (This is why blind people are losing jobs.)

Some universities are now requiring that all new students bring a certain
type of computer to school in order that selection of software
can be standardized across the campus.

Because technology is changing and becoming an important part of
education, will there be a point that use of certain computer
technology will be as fundamental as using the main language
of an institution?

My impression is that universities are not required to build specialized
computers for various disabled students.  I wonder if universities could
use a similar arguement that they should not be required to build
specialized software for each disabled student.


> The reason to support more than one type of browser on an intranet
> Good practice.
> ---
> Special Needs within a corporation will require a different browser.
> Our college has a number of systems, not surprisingly.
> Apple's are used by some different thinking types apparently.
> Not all are networked, so some comms go via www.
> Jonathan Chetwynd
> jay@peepo.com
Received on Tuesday, 26 October 1999 13:59:32 UTC

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