Your Step-by-Step Guide to Understanding ADA Compliance In Utah
The web landscape poses a lot of challenges related to accessibility for differently-abled people.
Because of this, Utah has implemented different policies, guidelines, and laws to ensure equal access.
Today, we’ll discuss everything you need to know about website accessibility in Utah from several perspectives. These include the current status of web accessibility in Utah, state policies, and factors that make ADA compliance significant in Utah.
If you have a Utah-based business or sell to Utah residents, this article is for you. Continue reading to learn more about ADA compliance in Utah.
Utah businesses never needed to worry about being sued for ADA Title III violations. From 2013 to 2015, the state received a total of only 8 lawsuits in federal court.
Nonetheless, this number has increased over the years. The number of case filings grew to 124 in 2016, making Utah the seventh busiest federal venue for ADA cases that year.
Additionally, there have been 125 lawsuits filed in the Utah federal courts in 2017, the highest number of cases since 2013.
In several accessibility cases, lawyers tried to exploit the law to make money instead of helping people with different abilities.
For instance, there’s a famous case in which a single law firm sent a differently-abled person to different websites to find ADA violations to create lawsuits.
However, state lawmakers are trying to resolve this issue. They believe that if businesses violate ADA compliance, they should be given notice.
This way, they can rectify their negligence and then only be charged for non-compliance.
The state of Utah has several guidelines when it comes to website accessibility. For instance, the state implements the W3C standards and Section-508.
The W3C has developed many web standards for accessibility. In Utah, websites must adhere to WCAG, which provides recommendations for a website’s text, video, and audio.
Additionally, the W3C has conformance levels, which determine a website’s accessibility. These are A, AA, and AAA. For more information on the WCAG, you can read our comprehensive guide here.
Aside from the WCAG, Utah also requires adherence to Section-508.
- Data tables should have row and column headers;
- Users should be able to skip repetitive links;
- Web pages should be readable without the use of an associated style sheet; and
- Websites should use alternative text for non-text content.
Besides the WCAG and Section-508, Utah also has an accessibility policy in place.
This policy mainly covers website design. Utah requires websites to adhere to several design standards, which include the site’s font sizing, navigation, and layout.
Aside from these, Utah’s standards also require websites to have a straightforward design, meaning they should be easy to use.
You’ll also notice that state agency websites have a statewide header, ensuring consistency and making them easier to navigate.
- The use of alt text
- Links should stand alone
- Audio and video transcripts
- Flexible layout
- The use of cascading style sheets (CSS)
Like in other states, Utah places great importance on ADA compliance. In Utah, website accessibility is not only about catering to the needs of differently-abled people – there are a few other factors that make this state unique:
- A growing number of the population don’t speak English
Aside from website design, accessibility also covers making information available to non-native English speakers. Thus, website translatability is another criteria of web accessibility in Utah.
- Catering to senior citizens
Web accessibility should also benefit other people, including individuals whose abilities are changing due to age.
Utah requires websites to make accommodations for all citizens by following web accessibility standards.
These factors relate to ease of use and translatability.
When you generate an accessibility statement, you don’t only show your commitment to providing accessibility to your users. You also show that you, as a brand, care about them.
Additionally, an accessibility statement informs users about the web accessiblity steps you have taken on your site.
Maintaining an accessible website that meets ADA Compliance in Utah is easy, especially when you’re up to date with state laws and regulations.
That said, you must regularly check accessibility guidelines to ensure your site is up to date and compliant.
- Section 508 Compliant
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The basic accessibility rights of a differently-abled person must be considered important and addressed.
Making your website ADA compliant and following WCAG guidelines is beneficial for businesses and individuals.
Plus, you can increase your prospective customers, clients, and visitors.
Additionally, it can enhance brand value and protecr you from lawsuits, which can get costly in no time.
If you’re curious about ADA compliance in other states, read our articles below!