Accessibility Contest Announcement
One of the projects the taskforce ran was a competition to assess the accessibility of government websites. The project was conducted by Media Access Australia and was run in two stages. The first was a brainstorming site to find those sites that could best do with a makeover. Then MAA listed the top sites on their AWARe.org.au site to tap into the expertise of an established community of people who assess site performance against criteria to provide a comparable score for the level of accessibility of each site.
The brainstorming process highlighted 3 sites:
- National Library – Newspapers
- The Prime Minister’s media gallery
- Parliament of Australia – live broadcasting
From MAA’s results, the National Library site fares the best. But this is a strange competition where those with the worst score win. MAA concluded:
“The Government 2.0 Taskforce competition and the AWARe project have been successful in identifying key access issues with five government websites. The National Library website appears to be generally accessible and the Prime Ministers Media Gallery needs some significant improvements.
The three other sites, the Parliament of Australia Live Broadcasting site, the Government 2.0 Taskforce website and the Social Inclusion website, are inaccessible to the point where a new website should be considered rather than addressing the access issues. Given the significance of the Social Inclusion website to people with disabilities, the government should consider creating a replacement for this website immediately. ”
It is now up to the agencies to take on the advice of MAA and improve the accessibility of their sites as set out in the attached report.