Accessible Websites Are Mandatory in Norway
This month a dream came true: I was able to publish a fragment (an lightweight article) about a topic that is close to my heart as a web developer in the KATAPULT magazine:
»If a website is fully keyboard navigable, it can be used by most people with disabilities. For example, blind or partially sighted users cannot use a computer mouse because they would need to be able to see to view and select items. In Norway, public websites must be accessible in the same way as private websites. Companies are spot-checked by the government’s “Directorate of Digitalisation” – if a Norwegian website does not meet the legal criteria, sanctions will follow. Scandinavian Airlines, for example, was threatened with a fine of around €15,000 per day because its new website failed to meet a number of accessibility criteria.
In Germany, there are few laws on digital accessibility. Since 2018, an EU directive has made barrier-free access to the websites of public institutions a legal requirement. However, there is no clear legal requirement for websites of private companies and non-governmental organizations. Although the General Equal Opportunities Act prohibits discrimination, if a complaint is made about a poorly accessible website, a court has to decide whether this constitutes discrimination.
Accessibility should not be a privilege but a fundamental right. That is why the new KATAPULT magazine website will be accessible. It will go live in July.«
First published in issue 17 of the KATAPULT magazine.
End of article. If you spot a typo or have thoughts about this article, feel free to write me. 🙆♂️
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