Web developers, have a “Duty of Care”

There’s plenty of “Googling” happening at the moment as many of us are doing lots of online research looking for service providers and strategies as we prepare for the NDIS.

I recently caught up with Natalie Khoo, a copywriter (specialising in advising businesses that are developing or updating their website).

During our chat we spoke about why we are still seeing websites that aren’t accessible for people who are vision-impaired users of adaptive technology.

Even since the incident in which Bruce McGuire (who is blind) sued the Sydney Olympic Games in 2000 for not giving him equal opportunity to purchase tickets, through to the suing of Coles in late 2014 by a vision-impaired user for not providing web accessible content, the issue of web accessibility still remains.

Back in 2014, only 26% of websites in Australia met the minimum requirement (‘A’ standard). Although there is no definitive data publicly available to say how we have progressed, the general consensus is that emerging web writers, designers and developers still have much to learn.

In saying that, we are now seeing rapid developments in assistive technologies – such as improved shortcuts and hotkeys in JAWS 10 (screenreader software that helps vision-impaired users understand and interact with online content) – that are rendering ‘AAA’ compliance less important.

Compliance with WCAG is a human rights issue.

Federal government websites must comply with AA-level standards.

Other organisations (including businesses) that do not meet these universally recognised web accessibility guidelines are at risk of breaching the Disability Discrimination Act.

When organising your website, it always pays to ask someone what their knowledge of web accessibility is like, and don’t let them bamboozle you with how many “bells and whistles” they can put on your website.

I highly recommend Natalie to have a chat with if you’ve got any questions getting your website right for everybody.

This is her website: http://avioncommunications.com.au/

Inaccessable Website

“Choice & Control”, not just a NDIS slogan

The movie “Me before You” I enjoyed it.

At the end of the day it was a humorous love story where a guy who had quadriplegia and his carer fell in love.

It made me laugh and cry, that’s why I go to the movies.

Being born with a disability, I would often look at others who had acquired their’s & think to myself, they need to toughen up & stop being so bitter towards themselves and others.

I remember telling “Superman” (Christopher Reeves) how disappointed I was with him after his presentation at the Fox Studios in Sydney when he told everybody

“He would rather be dead than remain in a wheelchair on a ventilator”

“Me before You” is being criticised big time on Facebook as a “Pity Party” sending out negative perceptions of people with disabilities.

In reality, everybody handles their own disability in their own way.

There are the elite go-getters and at the other end you have those who struggle every day.

We need more “Disruptive” movies like “Me before You” that challenges peoples’ perception about disability.

I support “Choice and Control” when it comes living or not with your disability.


Do Board Members “Get” the NDIS ?

Following on from my last post about NDIS readiness for disabilities professionals, there is a very important group of people that need to have a better understanding about the NDIS than they do.

I’m referring to Boards and Board members of not-for-profit organizations.

A lawyer colleague of mine, Geoff Donovan and I are delivering a seminar on the Board’s leadership role in the new NDIS world for disability service providers.

Time : 5-6 pm Wednesday 25th of May 2016

Location : Purpose Law Level 17, 31 Queen Street Melbourne

Cost : $65.00  (plus GST & booking fee)

BOOK EVENT : https://www.eventbrite.com/e/is-your-board-ndis-ready-tickets-24383010240

Promotional Video

Geoff’s legal expertise is in the area of “Good Governance” with a particular focus on Directors duties for community and corporate organisations.

I will be giving my views looking through the “participants” lens.

As I have been a governance member on a number of boards I believe the NDIS will challenge some board members in understanding a different way of thinking which is now required as we move from a welfare model to an insurance model.

Leadership by the Board is crucial in these times of transformational change in the disability sector which requires a definite mindset shift by Board members.

When I encourage people to embrace “choice and control” when choosing a provider, I suggest that they look closely at 3 aspects.

  1. Does their board really understand the NDIS?
  2. What is the culture of the organisation?
  3. Are people with disabilities represented with in the organisation?

NDIS Insurance pic