Accessibility for nsw.gov.au

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An accessible website is one where any user, no matter their ability, can access the same information and the same content.

This can include people with disabilities, such as:

  • Low or no vision
  • Hearing loss or deafness
  • Physical or motor disabilities affecting movement or ability to use a mouse or similar device
  • Neurological disabilities including dyslexia, attention disorders, intellectual disabilities for example

Web accessibility also helps people who wouldn’t necessarily identify as having a disability, including:

  • People with temporary disabilities like a broken arm or lost glasses
  • People with a situational limitation like being in an environment with bright sunlight, or in an office where they can’t listen to audio, or even trying to find something while holding a baby
  • People whose first language is not English
  • People using a variety of technology devices, such as smart watches, home hubs, outdated smart phones
  • People with slow or poor internet connections.

At nsw.gov.au we aim to reach the widest possible audience with our content while ensuring we meet the latest standard of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) to the highest degree (AA level).

 

Why is accessibility important?

If we don't make our site accessible, a significant number of customers may not be able to access or content, or will have difficulty. 

Census data shows just how many customers may be impacted by disability:

  • 1.3 million people (16.9% of population) in NSW report a disability (source: 2018 census data)
  • 465,000 people (6% of population) in NSW need assistance with core activities (source: 2021 census data)
  • 850,000 people in NSW provide unpaid care to a person with a disability, health condition, or due to old age (source: ABS 2018)

 

How we manage accessibility on nsw.gov.au

Accessibility is everyone's responsibility, however the techniques you use vary depending on your role. 

As a content editor you should:

  • Use the Accessibility checklist to make sure your content is accessible
  • Follow plain English guidelines, and aim for a reading age below Grade 9
  • Use SiteImprove to check and review your pages for accessibility issues.
  • Create pages in the CMS rather than uploading documents, but if you must, follow the PDF and Word accessibility guidelines

The nsw.gov.au team ensures that:

  • We use an accessibility by design approach when developing new features and functionality
  • We test all features and functionality on assistive technologies such as screen readers and magnifiers before they are released
  • The site is coded so that all functionality is keyboard accessible

The nsw.gov.au team also supports content editors and our agency partners by:

  • Monitoring the site as a whole for accessibility issues using SiteImprove
  • Working with content editors to rectify any issues
  • Undertaking regular site audits with the aim of achieving independent certification that the site meets WCAG requirements

If you'd like more information on this, visit OneCX Accessibility.

 

 

Need any more help?

If you have any questions, or require assistance with anything mentioned on this article, submit a request via the webform.

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