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MEPs vote for web accessibility for all


26 Feb 2014


Health & Consumers

ANEC welcomes todays’ European Parliament vote for a Directive on the Accessibility of Public Sector Bodies’ Websites which will ensure access to on-line public services to all consumers, whatever their ages and abilities. The Parliament’s report brought significant improvements to the original Commission’s proposal in terms of public web-sites covered and increased enforcement provisions as well as inclusion of access from a handheld mobile device and mobile applications, in line with ANEC’s requests (1).

“Less than one-third of public websites are accessible in Europe. 80 million Europeans with disabilities, 150 million aged over 50, and many citizens without high ICT skills will benefit from this legislation.” said ANEC Secretary-General, Stephen Russell. “Now that we also have the standards (2) to implement the directive, there is no reason for the Council to drag its feet on this file. We call onMember States, and especially the Greek Presidency, to prioritize this dossier and endorse the Parliament’s position”.

Websites need to be designed in an accessible manner, and in compliance with accessibility standards, if consumers with disabilities and older consumers are to be able to access the Internet. For many years now, ANEC and its partners have been campaigning for mandatory web-accessibility legislation (3).