October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM), which celebrates the contributions of America’s workers with disabilities and showcases supportive, inclusive employment policies and practices. The U.S. Department of Labor themed this year’s NDEAM observance as “Disability: Part of the Equity Equation” to recognize the important role people with disabilities play in a diverse and inclusive workforce. U.S. Access Board staff will be presenting on accessibility and participating in various conferences, forums, summits, and trainings throughout the month.
From October 11 – 13, Board staff will participate in General Administration Service’s (GSA) 2022 Interagency Accessibility Forum (IAAF), which celebrates accessibility as a foundation for inclusion, diversity, and equity within the federal government. Board Senior Accessibility Specialist Tim Creagan will present on the panel “Section 508 PM Role: Using What You Know” and discuss managing a Section 508 program in a cultural and technical environment to implement accessibility for information and communication technology (ICT). Board IT Specialist Bruce Bailey will also moderate the panel “WCAG 3: Current Status and Ways to Get Involved,” where presenters will review the goals and status of Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 3.0 and receive feedback from the attendees on moving forward with web accessibility. Additionally, Board Chair Taryn Williams and Executive Director Sachin Pavithran will present on the panel “Unlocking the Power Of Accessibility: Recognizing and Embracing Your Superpower.”
Pavithran will also present at the 10th Anniversary of the M-Enabling Summit, themed “Digital Inclusion: Strategies for Equal Opportunities,” held October 24 – 26, and the 29th Annual Mid-Atlantic ADA Conference, held October 11 – 13. At the summit, he will present on the adoption, implementation gaps, and evolution of accessibility standards in a changing technology environment. At the Mid-Atlantic ADA Conference, Pavithran will discuss the agency’s efforts to address issues related to diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility. Board Training Coordinator and Senior Accessibility Specialist Bill Botten will also present on the recreation facilities requirements in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Architectural Barriers Act (ABA) Accessibility Standards for amusement rides, recreational boating facilities, fishing piers and platforms, golf, and mini golf, sports facilities, play areas, and swimming pools and spas.
Accessibility Specialist Bobby Stinnette will present “CHA Issue-Based Forum: Accessibility Standards for Medical Diagnostic Equipment” to the Connecticut Hospital Association for an October 26 webinar. Stinnette will review the Board’s accessibility standards for medical diagnostic equipment and discuss design criteria for accessibility of examination tables and chairs, weight scales, radiological and mammography equipment, and other diagnostic equipment for people with disabilities.
On October 27, Technical Assistance Coordinator Scott Windley will present on designing for inclusive customer service at the Certified Access Specialist Institute in Los Angeles, California. Windley will cover requirements in the ADA Accessibility Standards that ensure goods and services, such as sales and service counters, ticket and service windows, check-out aisles, and food service lines, are accessible to all customers, including those with disabilities.
The Board’s training program continues to provide organizations and federal agencies with information on accessibility standards and accessible design. On October 18, Board General Counsel Christopher Kuczynski will present on the Board’s mission and accessibility standards for the U.S. Office of Government Ethics’ NDEAM program. From October 4 – 6, Botten will provide training to the National Park Service, Alaska Region on the ABA Standards and recreation facilities, including recreational boating, fishing, and outdoor developed areas, as well as shared use paths. He will also provide accessibility training on the ABA Accessibility Standards to GSA on October 26.
On October 13, Senior ICT Accessibility Specialist Kathy Eng will present on the Board’s Section 508 ICT Testing Baseline for Web Accessibility as part of the National Transportation Safety Board’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) Series. To learn more about the Testing Baseline, visit the Board’s August 04, 2021 news release. On October 19, Creagan will present “Section 508: Addressing Barriers in the Digital Workplace” to the Department of Justice’s U.S. Attorney’s Offices Nationwide. At the end of the month, he will also present and meet with the Accessibility Standards Canada Technical Committee to discuss the history of the Section 508 Standards.
The Board provides technical guidance on its accessibility guidelines and standards and accessible design through its helpline at 1-202-272-0080, extension 3 and by email at email@example.com. Accessibility specialists are available to answer questions on accessibility as it relates to the built environment, outdoor sites, streets and sidewalks, transportation vehicles and vessels, information and communication technology, and medical diagnostic equipment.