On October 2, while the news covered President Trump’s admission to Walter Reed for treatment of Covid-19, Congressmen Lou Correa (D-CA) and Ted Budd (R-NC) introduced the bipartisan Online Accessibility Act, which they claim will “increase website accessibility and reduce predatory lawsuits filed against businesses.”¹ Will it work? That’s a reasonable question.
Section 508 Web Access
Tooting our own horn as they say, we note that B2B E-Commerce World quoted Richard in a January 17, 2018 article by Paul Demery, “The government’s push to higher web accessibility standards.” For businesses that do business with the federal government the article provides a good overview of the Section 508 “ICT Refresh” that incorporated WCAG 2.0 into the requirements of Section 508. Richard’s observation was simply that litigation under Section 508 is far less common that litigation under Title III of the ADA because the requirements apply primarily to the federal government and some of its technology contractors so disputes are handled directly between the government and those contractors. It should be noted that Title III and Title II lawsuits against entities that receive federal funding frequently include a claim under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, which has only a general non-discrimination provision and whose regulations do not explicitly incorporate a web accessibility standard. DOJ takes the position that both Section 504 and Title III of the ADA require web accessibility.