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What is the “508 Refresh”?

The Section 508 refresh of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1973 jointly updates and reorganizes the Section 508 standards in response to market trends and innovations, such as the convergence of technologies. The refresh also harmonizes these requirements with other guidelines and standards both in the U.S. and abroad, including standards issued by the European Commission and with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), a globally recognized voluntary consensus standard for web content and information and communication technology. Specifically, the rule references WCAG 2.0 Level AA success criteria and applies them not only to websites, but also to electronic documents and software.

Read more about the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1973.

What is Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973?

Section 508, an amendment to the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, mandates that all electronic and information technology developed, procured, maintained, or used by the federal government be accessible to people with disabilities, including employees and members of the public.  

On January 18, 2017 the Access Board, an independent federal agency that promotes equality for people with disabilities, issued a final rule or “508 Refresh” that updates accessibility requirements for information and communication technology in the federal sector.

What is the Section 508 Refresh?

The Section 508 refresh jointly updates and reorganizes the Section 508 standards in response to market trends and innovations, such as the convergence of technologies. The refresh also harmonizes these requirements with other guidelines and standards both in the U.S. and abroad, including standards issued by the European Commission and with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), a globally recognized voluntary consensus standard for web content and information and communication technology. Specifically, the rule references WCAG 2.0 Level AA success criteria and applies them not only to websites, but also to electronic documents and software.

Read more about the Rehabilitation act of 1973.

What is Section 504?

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in federal entities, or programs that receive federal financial assistance. It aims to protect children and adults with disabilities from exclusion, and unequal treatment in schools, jobs and the community. Section 504 sets the stage for enactment of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Subsequent amendments to the Rehabilitation act of 1973 strengthened requirements for access to electronic and information technology in the federal sector.

Read more about the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

What is the Rehabilitation Act of 1973?

The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in programs conducted by, receiving financial assistance from, or employing federal employees or contractors in federal agencies. The Rehabilitation Act has several sections impacting digital accessibility, including 504 and 508:

What is Section 504?

Section 504 prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in federal entities, or programs that receive federal financial assistance. It aims to protect children and adults with disabilities from exclusion, and unequal treatment in schools, jobs and the community. Section 504 sets the stage for enactment of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Subsequent amendments to the Rehabilitation act of 1973 strengthened requirements for access to electronic and information technology in the federal sector.

What is Section 508?

Section 508, an amendment to the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, mandates that all electronic and information technology developed, procured, maintained, or used by the federal government be accessible to people with disabilities, including employees and members of the public.  

On January 18, 2017 the Access Board, an independent federal agency that promotes equality for people with disabilities, issued a final rule or “508 Refresh” that updates accessibility requirements for information and communication technology in the federal sector.

What is the Section 508 Refresh?

The Section 508 refresh jointly updates and reorganizes the Section 508 standards in response to market trends and innovations, such as the convergence of technologies. The refresh also harmonizes these requirements with other guidelines and standards both in the U.S. and abroad, including standards issued by the European Commission and with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), a globally recognized voluntary consensus standard for web content and information and communication technology. Specifically, the rule references WCAG 2.0 Level AA success criteria and applies them not only to websites, but also to electronic documents and software.

Who needs to be 508 Compliant?

Section 508 applies to federal agencies as well as any company that does business with a federal agency. This includes private contractors, the financial industry, healthcare, many legal organizations, and more.

What Technologies are Included in Section 508?

If your company falls under the jurisdiction of Section 508 compliance, the following technologies must be accessible:

  • PDFs
  • Computer software and hardware
  • Mobile apps
  • Websites
  • Games
  • Videos, multimedia and all other digital content
  • Kiosks

How do I become Section 508 Compliant?

AudioEye’s end-to-end Ally Managed Service ensures the fastest, most comprehensive and efficient path to digital accessibility and compliance. Our solution begins to identify and remediate errors on day one of implementation, and once fully provisioned, AudioEye certifies your website and helps you maintain substantial conformance with WCAG 2.1 Level AA success criteria.

What Is ADA Title II?

Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act is a regulation which prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities by public entities – state or local government and any of their departments, agencies, or other instrumentalities. The Federal Government is not considered a public entity and is covered under Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

Learn more about The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990

Learn more about the Americans with Disabilities Act Title II Regulations

What Is ADA Title III?

ADA Title III is a Regulation which prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in the activities of places of public accommodations (business that are generally open to the public and that fall into one of 12 categories listed by the ADA), and requires newly constructed or altered places of public accommodation – as well as commercial facilities (privately owned, nonresidential facilities such as factories, warehouses or office buildings) – to comply with the ADA Standards. Today, these places of public accommodation may be interpreted to include the Internet.

Learn more about the Americans with Disabilities Act Title III Regulations

What is the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Compliance?

On July 26, 1990, President George H.W. Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), prohibiting discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life. The purpose is to grant millions of individuals with disabilities equal access to all public and private places.

In 2008, the Americans With Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) was signed into law, further defining the word “disability:”

Title I of the ADA is intended to ensure equal employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities. Employers must provide reasonable accommodations to employees with disabilities to ensure they can participate in the job application process or to perform specific job functions.

Title II of the ADA prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all programs, activities and services of public entities. This applies to all state and local governments and any of their departments, agencies or other instrumentalities.

Title III of the ADA prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in places of public accommodation, including such places as restaurants, private schools, sports stadiums, office buildings, and more. Businesses are required to make “reasonable modifications” to serve people with disabilities.

While the ADA does not explicitly mention website compliance, today, many courts are ruling that the Internet is considered a “place of public accommodation,” defined in Title III. As a result, thousands of private companies are facing legal action from plaintiffs claiming an inaccessible website is an ADA Title III violation.

How Do I Ensure ADA Compliance?

AudioEye will help you achieve digital accessibility and compliance quickly and easily, significantly reducing your legal risk. Using patented technology and a team of subject matter experts, AudioEye works closely with your organization to efficiently fix barriers and optimize access, and we don’t stop there. Our solution provides ongoing monitoring and maintenance to ensure digital content continues to meet and exceed accessibility standards.