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Product Accessibility

Product testing for 508 compliance

Currently each agency is making determinations as to whether a product is 508 compliant. A central location for sharing product testing for accessibility, by product name and version, would save each agency from having to replicate testing over and over again. We could start with major applications such as Windows and Lotus Notes. Most agencies are spending significant dollars to make some major procurements, such... more »

Voting

18 votes
Active
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Improve Capabilities

Accessibility and the future of technology

Accessibility is a problem, which the Federal government has not fully dealt with in terms of making technology accessible to employees and more importantly making technology accessible to the American public. Technology is both a problem and an answer. Accessibility is not just a good thing to do, it's the right thing to do. With more and more
countries adopting policies similiar to Section 508, making a product... more »

Voting

6 votes
Active
(@admin0)

Increase Transparency

Making a Section 508 complaint

Do people in HR or in areas that might handle Section 508 get trained in how to handle Section 508
complaints? It seems that the whole issue of how to make a Section 508 complaint for those of us that might want to is very confusing because
all the agencies are supposed to come up with their own plans for how to handle them.
Comment from Accessibility Committee virtual Listening Session, Sept 8, 2011

Voting

13 votes
Active

Roles and Responsibilities

Accessibility for Government Contractors

Contracts in which the Government provides computers, telephone service, desks, chairs, copier access, etc as government furnished equipment (GFE's) must provide assistive technology so that contractors with disabilities can have access to these products and services.

Voting

8 votes
Active

Strengthen Accountability

Accessibility thru the eyeglasses of a FISMA framework

Conformance to Section 508 isn't a "one and done." Technology, and user needs change over time. Just like in the InfoSec community, systems (aka EIT) change and with each change induces or reduces risk (aka Section 508 conformance).

Why not look at "conformance" to Section 508 as Risk Management. Over 350 million users in the USA have the capability of accessing our ICT/EIT, 35 million are known to have disabilities,... more »

Voting

3 votes
Active

Strengthen Accountability

More Emphasis on Agency Implementation and Less on Procurement

More metrics that emphasize sound internal accessibility requirements are needed. Today's model agencies have trained developers, trained and deployed accessibility testers, implemented project life cycle accessibility requirements, posted accessibility acceptance gates (for internal applications and contract acceptance criteria), and other important agency governance measures to ensure an improving environment. The... more »

Voting

2 votes
Active

Product Accessibility

Updating the Section 508 standards - 1194.2

Section 508 as it relates to technology (1194.21, 1194.22) should be evaluated and updated on a regular basis. Technology changes rapidly, and the standards are sorely outdated. This means meeting these standards as a software vendor while still enhancing and advancing the product is difficult and costly. It can also result in poor overall user experience by government employees because it may limit the advancements... more »

Voting

7 votes
Active

Improve Capabilities

Bad Purchases Made Better Through Implementation

Agencies must purchase E&IT, the market is not doing a great job of supplying compliant products and solutions, and so often agencies must purchase inaccessible products. The job does not end there though. An agency is still charged with implementing that E&IT in the most accessible manner give its ‘other than procurement’ obligations (develop, use, maintain). It is also still under Section 504 obligations. Agencies... more »

Voting

2 votes
Active

Increase Transparency

Provisional procurement

Not all products will be fully compliant. Some sole source products are almost completely non-compliant. Yet agencies need ICT to do their jobs. How about letting agencies purchase products that are not fully compliant under the following conditions:

1. The vendor commits to a remediation plan with an enforceable timetable.

2. The vendor provides all testing results, workarounds, tips & tricks,etc. that can aid in accommodation... more »

Voting

7 votes
Active

Improve Capabilities

Rolling Refresh of 508 Technical Provisions

There's no way that regulations can keep up with the pace of technological evolution. How about identifying those Technical Provisions whose impact has most eroded, and accelerating their updates via some more agile process than the typical rulemaking? The process should be open, and could result not in new regulatory language but in authoritative guidance. For example, it could state the the current provision, especially... more »

Voting

9 votes
Active

Increase Transparency

Open 508 to a Wide Community of Practice

Right now 508 decisions are made with almost no transparency. This leads to disparities among agencies, and insufficient information about accessibility for other decisionmakers -- basically everyone who buys or uses ICT. (Remember, 508 is supposed to benefit the entire ICT market.) For example, why are VPATs treated as private communications between an agency and a vendor?

All information about ICT accessibility should... more »

Voting

10 votes
Active

Improve Capabilities

Coordinate among agencies with accessibility responsibilities

By one count there are 22 federal entities that have some accessibility oversight role. In 508-land, the big ones are the Access Board, GSA, DoJ, CIO Council, and FAR and the Chief Acquisition Officer Council. But the FCC, Dept. of Education, Dept. of Labor, National Council on Disability, NIST, Department of Transportation and many others have parallel roles in their own domains. Why not astound the public and make a... more »

Voting

11 votes
Active