State & Local Government Web Accessibility Complaint Repository

Settlement Agreements

The United States Department of Justice has been reaching settlement agreements with all industry types. In 1999, the DOJ reached its first settlement agreement with Toledo, Ohio under their initiative Project Civic Access. With Project Civic Access, the DOJ has reached more than 200 settlement agreements with counties, cities, towns, and villages across the United States, including Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia.

The Project Civic Access initiative was to ensure that people with disabilities have full access to civic life. The Department of Justice has reached these settlement agreements with state and local government entities under the Americans with Disabilities Act and in some cases Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act.

Listed below are a sampling of the settlement agreements that counties, cities, towns, and villages have entered into with the Department of Justice. By entering into settlement agreements, they did not admit to violating the Americans with Disabilities Act.

City of Milwaukee, Wisconsin

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2016
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: The Department of Justice and Milwaukee entered an settlement agreement to ensure continued access to all the cities services for people with disabilities. The DOJ's Civil Rights Division reviews the city's compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and highlighted areas of improvement. Milwaukee agreed to remedy building accessibility issues as well as telecommunication and web page accessibility. Web pages contain barriers that make it inaccessible to people with disabilities using assistive technology. Milwaukee agreed to remove these barriers by hiring a website accessibility consultant to review and ensure that their web pages are accessible using the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level AA.

Related Resources

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and The City of Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Cities of DeKalb, Vero Beach, Isle of Palms, and Fallon

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2015
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: The U.S. Department of Justice investigated the cities of DeKalb, Illinois; Vero Beach, Florida; Isle of Palms, South Carolina; and Fallon, Nevada under Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). They found that online application asked questions in violation of the ADA. In their settlement agreements, the cities agreed to make their job applications and employment opportunities online web pages accessible using the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0, as well as conforming to ADA by not asking disability questions in the application and hiring process.

Related Resources

Justice Department Reaches Settlements with Four Cities Across the Country to Remove Disability-Related Questions from Job Applications and Ensure Web Accessibility

County of Nueces, Texas

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2015
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act and Rehabilitation Act

Summary: The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) began a compliance review of Nueces County, Texas under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. The county receives funds from the Department of Justice, which requires the county to adhere to ADA compliance under Section 504, since it is considered a "public entity" under the ADA. The DOJ found that people with disabilities are not receiving access to the County's various programs, activities, and services. In part of the settlement agreement with the DOJ, Nueces County complied to make their website accessible to people with disabilities following the standards of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level AA by hiring a consultant, provide training to employees, and continuous website accessibility testing.

Related Resources

Justice Department Reaches Agreement with Nueces County, Texas, to Improve Accessibility of Services and Programs

Settlement Agreement between The United States of America and Nueces County, Texas [PDF]

County of San Juan, New Mexico

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2015
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: Under the compliance review of San Juan County, New Mexico, the Department of Justice found that the county was in violation of the Americans with Disabilities act as a "public entity" and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. In their agreement, San Juan County must take action to remedy the violations. As part of the agreement, the county will make their website accessible using Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level AA conformance. They will also provide training to employees and hire a coordinator for web accessibility.

Related Resources

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and San Juan County, New Mexico

County of Robeson, North Carolina

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2015
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: Through the Project Civic Access initiative, the U.S. Department of Justice reviewed Robeson County to ensure they were complying with the Americans with Disabilities Act. After their review, the DOJ found that, as the largest geographic county in North Carolina, most residents were living below poverty level and the county had many barriers to people with disabilities. Under their settlement with the DOJ, Robeson County agreed to move said barriers, including website accessibility with new policies and implementations to ensure that people with disabilities have no barriers when trying to access county information and services.

Related Resources

Justice Department Reaches Agreement with Robeson County, North Carolina, to Increase Accessibility

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and Robeson County, North Carolina

County of Pennington, South Dakota

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2015
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: The Department of Justice reviewed Pennington County under Tile II of the Americans with Disabilities Act and found that their buildings, programs, services and activities are not complying with the ADA. Pennington County contained barriers for people with disabilities, thus limiting equal access to the county. In their settlement with the DOJ, Pennington County agreed to the remediation of their communication procedures, infrastructure, employment, and web-based services and programs. Pennington County agreed to hire a U.S. approved consultant to make their websites accessible pursuant to Title III of the ADA by following Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level AA.

Related Resources

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and Pennington County, South Dakota

Counties of Merced, Yakima, and Champaign

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2015
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: The Department of Justice initiated Project Civil Access and celebrated the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act by "Advancing Equal Access," ensuring that local governments were complying with the ADA. After reviews found that Merced County, California; Yakima County, Washington; and Champaign County, Illinois contained barriers to people with disabilities. As part of their settlements, each county agreed to remove said barriers, including those preventing full access to their websites. To ensure website accessibility, they agreed to conform to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level AA.

Related Resources

Justice Department Reaches Agreements with Three Counties Across the Country to Increase Accessibility

Settlement Agreement The United States of America and Merced County, California

County of McLennan, Texas

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2015
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: After reviewing and finding that McLennan County had barriers to people with disabilities, the Department of Justice entered into a settlement with the county. To become compliant, with the Americans with Disabilities Act, McLennan County agreed to implement a new county website that follows the standards in the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0, as well as remove other barriers in physical locations.

Related Resources

Justice Department Settles with McLennan County, Texas, Regarding Accessibility of County Services Under the Americans with Disabilities Act

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and McLennan County, Texas

County of Lumpkin, Georgia

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2015
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: The Lumpkin County Board of Commissioners entered into a settlement agreement with U.S. Department of Justice after an audit of compliance under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Under their agreement, Lumpkin County agreed to make their web-based services and programs accessible to people with disabilities by following the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0.

Related Resources

ADA Settlement Agreement Signed with U.S. Department of Justice

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and Lumpkin County, Georgia

Village of Ruidoso, New Mexico

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2015
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: The Department of Justice began a review into the Village of Ruidoso under the Americans with Disabilities Act because the village was asking application questions in violation of the ADA. Under the settlement agreement the village will provide training to employees on accessibility and ensure that their websites are accessible to people with disabilities. To make their websites accessible, Village of Ruidoso will follow the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0.

Related Resources

Justice Department Reaches Settlements with Three Public Entities to Remove Barriers to Employment for People with Disabilities

Settlement Agreement Between the United States of America and the Village of Ruidoso, New Mexico [PDF]

Cities of Parowan and Española

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2015
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: The Cities of Parowan, Utah and Española, New Mexico entered settlement agreements with the Department of Justice after investigations into the cities under the Americans with Disabilities Act. The City of Parowan and Española had asked disability questions in their application process that was in violation of the ADA. Under their agreements to ensure compliance with the ADA, they will hire an accessibility coordinator/trainer. To comply with the ADA they will also make their website accessible to people with disabilities by following the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0.

Related Resources

Justice Department Reaches Settlements with Three Public Entities to Remove Barriers to Employment for People with Disabilities

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and the City of Parowan, Utah

Settlement Agreement Between the United States of America and the City of Española, New Mexico

County of Galveston County, Texas

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2015
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disability Act

Summary: After auditing Galveston County under the Project Civil Access, the Department of Justice reached a settlement agreement to ensure compliance of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Under the agreement, Galveston County will modify buildings and communication to be accessible to people with disabilities. They will also update their website to follow the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 to maintain a website that is accessible to people who are blind and have other disabilities.

Related Resources

Justice Department Reaches Agreement with Galveston County, Texas, to Improve Accessibility of Services and Programs

Settlement Agreement Between the United States of America and Galveston County, Texas

City of Cedar Rapids, Iowa

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2015
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: To ensure equal civic access for people with disabilities, the City of Cedar Rapids and the Department of Justice entered into a settlement agreement under the Americans with Disabilities Act. They also agreed to make their website accessible by following the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0.

Related Resources

Justice Department Reaches Agreement with Cedar Rapids, Iowa, to Improve Accessibility of Services and Programs

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and the City of Cedar Rapids, Iowa

County of Chaves, New Mexico

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2015
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: The Department of Justice initiated a compliance review of the Chaves County under the Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act. After finding violations of the ADA, the DOJ and Chaves County entered into a settlement Agreement. Chaves County agreed to remediations to comply with the ADA. Part of their agreement is making their websites accessible to people with disabilities by following the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0.

Related Resources

Justice Department Signs Agreements with Chaves County, New Mexico, to Ensure Civic Access for People with Disabilities

Town of Poestenkill, New Mexico

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2013
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: The town of Poestenkill entered into a settlement agreement with the Department of Justice to ensure that all citizens had access to the town's buildings and the services they offered. The agreement was signed under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act. To make their website compliant, Poestenkill agreed to follow the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG).

Related Resources

Justice Department Signs Agreement with the Town of Poestenkill, N.Y., to Ensure Civil Access for People with Disabilities

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and the Town of Poestenkill, New York

County of Stewart, Georgia

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2013
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: Under the Project Civil Access and the Americans with Disabilities, the Department of Justice initiated a review into Stewart County. They identified access barriers people with disabilities would encounter and entered an agreement with the county to fix the barriers. Part of the agreement is to make the counties websites accessible by following the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines.

Justice Department Signs Agreement with Stewart County, Georgia, to Ensure Civic Access for People with Disabilities

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and Stewart County, Georgia

Related Resources

City of Jacksonville, Florida

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2013
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: Under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Department of Justice initiated a compliance review of Jacksonville. It was initiated because Jacksonville one of Florida's largest cities and park system in the United States. Under the agreement, Jacksonville will fix flaws in its buildings and services to provide full access to people with disabilities. In part they will train necessary employees in website accessibility.

Related Resources

Justice Department Reaches Settlement Agreement with City of Jacksonville, Fla., to Ensure Civic Access for People with Disabilities

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and City if Jacksonville, Florida

City of West Columbia, South Carolina

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2013
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disability Act

Summary: Under their agreement with the Department of Justice, West Columbia agreed to implement new policies to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. To be fully accessible the city agreed to remove barriers from their physical locations, as well as their law enforcement communication, employment, and web presence.

Related Resources

Settlement Agreement Between the United States of America and the City of West Columbia, SC

City of Fort Morgan, Colorado

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2013
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: To ensure the Department of Justice's initiative to make the country accessible to people with disabilities, Fort Morgan agreed to a settlement with them. To fully comply with the American's with Disabilities Act, the city will remove barriers to their physical buildings and their web pages to make them accessible to people with disabilities. To make their websites accessible to people with disabilities, Fort Morgan had to distribute a technical assistance document to its employees and third party internet personnel, create a process for implementing accessible web pages, and have web pages tested periodically for accessibility by users with disabilities.

Related Resources

Justice Department Signs Agreement with the City of Fort Morgan, Colo. to Ensure Civic Access for People with Disabilities

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and the City of Fort Morgan, Colorado

County of Schuylkill, Pennsylvania

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2013
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: Under Project Civic Access, the Department of Justice and the County of Schuylkill entered an agreement to ensure compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. To ensure compliance, Schuylkill County agreed to remove physical and web barriers to people with disabilities.

Related Resources

Justice Department Signs Agreement with Schuylkill County, Pa., to Ensure Civic Access for People with Disabilities

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania

County of Randolph, Georgia

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2013
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: For Project Civil Access, the Department of Justice has been ensuring that the United States counties and cities are comply with Americans with Disabilities Act to ensure civic access. After reviewing Randolph County, the Department of Justice initiated an agreement. Under the agreement, Randolph County developed and implemented new policies and plans for their physical buildings that had barriers and web pages that were inaccessible to people with disabilities.

Related Resources

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and Randolph County, Georgia

Justice Department Signs Agreement in Texas and Georgia to Ensure Civic Access for People with Disabilities

City of Providence, Rhode Island

  • Settled with: U.S. Department of Justice
  • Year: 2013
  • Issue: Violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Summary: Through their agreement with the Department of Justice, Providence agreed to remove barriers and make the city accessible to people with disabilities under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Part of their agreement was to make their web pages accessible to people with visual impairments. In the agreement it was stated that Providence needed to refer and send their employees who work with webpages, "Attachment H." Attachment H demonstrates the importance of website accessibility, the online barriers that are faced by people with disabilities when they use assistive technology, and the benefits for everyone. To conclude Attachment H, lists resources for web developers. The resources include a links to Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG).

Related Resources

Attachment H: "Accessibility of State and Local Government Websites to People with Disabilities"

Settlement Agreement Between The United States of America and the City of Providence, Rhode Island

Kaely Wang

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