White House Doubles Down On Accessibility
Online and in the briefing room, the Biden administration says it is working to prioritize accessibility for people with disabilities.
With the inauguration of President Joe Biden last month, the White House website got a revamp and that included a push to increase accessibility.
The new site prominently features an accessibility statement committing to “ensure all functionality and all content is accessible to all Americans.” That means an “ongoing” effort to conform to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, a standard for web accessibility, the statement says.
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“These guidelines not only help make web content accessible to users with sensory, cognitive and mobility disabilities, but ultimately to all users, regardless of ability,” reads the White House website.
The Biden administration indicated that it is actively seeking feedback about ways to improve the usability of the website for those with disabilities.
Separately, Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that all daily White House press briefings will now feature an American Sign Language interpreter as part of the administration’s efforts to be inclusive.
“The president is committed to building an America that is more inclusive, more just, and more accessible for every American, including Americans with disabilities and their families,” Psaki said.
Last year, the National Association of the Deaf sued the Trump administration for failing to provide ASL interpreters at press briefings related to COVID-19. A court ordered the White House in September to provide interpreters at COVID-19 briefings, something which began in November.
The Biden administration is now taking that one step farther by committing to interpreters at all briefings.
“There is more work to be done, but this is a great day for inclusion and access for the deaf and hard of hearing community,” the National Association of the Deaf said in a statement.