Oopsie! Should You Axe Your Accessibility Team?

Image via iStock.

Have you heard that Chief Twit axed the entire accessibility engineering team at Twitter last month? Oopsie! Those layoffs were probably not a good thing.

Word travels on social media, in the news, and in the tech world on blog posts and more! Read recent articles from the Washington Post, Wired, TechCrunch, Time, and Google for more details!

Since you know I like to write about LinkedIn,  you can see people’s posts on LinkedIn about the demise of Twitter’s accessibility team by following hashtags such as #accessibility #a11y #disabilities #twitter #accessibledesign #accessibilitymatters and more!

Holy smokes, Batman! Cutting the accessibility team and accessibility is not something to take lightly. There will be legal eyes all over this!

Why is this important? December 3rd is International Day of Persons with Disabilities, though accessibility and inclusion are essential daily, whether individuals have visible or invisible disabilities.

A disability is not an inability, but we must remove barriers to create an inclusive and accessible environment for all, including the workplace.

You have probably heard of the Americans with Disabilities Act or ADA. ADA Compliance is outlined in the Americans with Disabilities Act for Accessibility Design.

ADA is a 1990 civil law mandating inclusion in public life for everyone, including people with disabilities. The ADA is sometimes confused with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which is federal law.

Section 508 provided guidelines for telecommunications equipment under the Communications Act of 1934, while Section 508 Refresh, released in 2017, is current with evolving technology changes. 

Section 508 Compliance and Remediation has to do with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) so that websites comply with Section 508 for equal opportunity. WCAG is a global set of standards.

Website accessibility can be accomplished through back-end coding, assistive technologies, and other means, including design.

It’s not just websites that need to be accessible, but the content on digital devices must also be, according to digital.gov.

There are legal repercussions for non-compliance that you can learn more about from the Department of Justice.

For readers who may want to know more about people with intellectual disabilities in the workplace, they should read this article from the EEOC.

A previous article I wrote in April 2022 has hyperlinks with some excellent resources.

Did you know that as an employer, you might get a tax benefit or deduction on IRS form 8826 by accommodating someone with a disability?

Suppose you have a disability or are an employer who wants to hire someone with a known disability who requires accommodations. In that case, there are plenty of employment attorneys out there who can answer your questions.

I am not an expert in this field, but I gathered a few resources that I hope you will find helpful. I care about this topic as a mother of an adult child who has ADHD and is Autistic.

Experts, please feel free to chime in with comments on my LinkedIn post.

Did you read last week’s article on Should you publish a vulnerable story on LinkedIn?


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