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www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com
New Zealand Digital Accessibility Laws
and Policies
By Adam Akinyemi
www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com
Introduction
● Over 25% of New Zealanders suffer from one form of
disability.
● This means about 1 in 4 New Zealanders is suffering
from physical, sensory, learning, or other impairment
that could affect the use of the web.
www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com
New Zealand Digital Accessibility Laws and Policies
New Zealand ensures barrier-free access to digital content
through:
● Human Rights Act 1993, including amendments
● Online Practice Guidelines
● United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with
Disabilities (UNCRPD)
www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com
New Zealand Human Rights Act 1993 and the Bill of Rights
Act 1990
● The Human Rights Act 1993 is a non-discrimination law
that prohibits discrimination on multiple bases, including
disability.
● The Act prohibits discrimination against different
characteristics, including disability. It protects people with
visual, motor, hearing, and cognitive, or learning
impairments.
www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com
Online Practice Guidelines
● Online Practice Guidelines were enacted as a mandatory policy in 2003 to propagate
the need for accessible online content among government organizations.
● The guidelines consist of different standards and guidance enacted in 2019, among
which are the Web Accessibility Standard 1.1 and Web Usability Standard 1.3 moving
from Web Accessibility Standard 1.0 (enacted 2013) which is based on Web Content
Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0.
● Web Accessibility Standard 1.1 mandates all public service and non-public service
agencies to meet the NZ Government Web Accessibility Standard from 1 July 2019.
The Web Accessibility Standard 1.1 is based on the Web Content Accessibility
Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 Level AA.
www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com
Online Practice Guidelines
Web Accessibility Standard 1.1 demands every website and web page, produced or
maintained, in part or in whole, by the New Zealand government organization,
excluding archived web pages to meet WCAG 2.1 Level AA except:
● Complex visual maps that associate information with data points or shapes that
cannot reasonably be represented by common identifiers (are exempt from
providing text alternatives).
● Alternatives for time-based media (descriptive text transcripts)
● Live synchronized media that does not present high-stakes information or
services
● All synchronized media are exempt from providing audio description for all
prerecorded video content in the media.
www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com
United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
The UNCRP came into play in 2018- an international treaty that ensures the rights of people with
disabilities.
● The UN legislation under Article 9 recognizes the rights of disabled people to access
information and communications, including information and communications
technologies and systems.
● Article 21 of the Act specifically requires Parties to take reasonable measures to
ensure individuals with disabilities can exercise their right to freedom of expression
and opinion.
● The Convention mandates Parties (countries) to ensure disabled persons can seek,
receive, and impart information and ideas on an equal basis with non-disabled
people and through all forms of communication of their choice.
● The UNCRP has also been ratified by the New Zealand government.
www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com
United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
(Cont’d)
The Convention mandates Parties (countries) to ensure disabled persons can access
information by:
● Providing information in accessible formats in a timely manner and without
additional cost;
● Accepting and facilitating the use of alternative communication- sign languages,
braille, and all other accessible formats of communication of their choice;
● Urging private entities that provide services to the public, including through the
internet, to provide services and information in accessible formats;
● Encouraging the mass media, including those that provide information through the
Internet, to make their services accessible;
● Recognizing and promoting the use of sign languages.
www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com
Compliance
● Agencies to which the Web Accessibility Standard 1.1 (and Web Usability
Standard 1.3) applies must be prepared to assess and report on its conformance
upon notification.
● In the case of non-conformance, each agency must submit a risk assessment
and management plan regarding any areas of non-conformance.
● Although the Web Standards explicitly mandates public service and non-public
service departments in the State Services to meet WCAG 2.1 AA (subject to a few
exceptions), other State sector organizations are strongly encouraged to
implement the Standard. This is due to the Human Rights Act 1993 and Bill of
Rights Act 1990’s ratification of the UNCRP.
www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com
Conclusion
Regulations compliance mean WCAG 2..1 Level AA compliance.
While failure to comply may result in financial or legal penalties,
compliance will:
● Prevent legal implications
● Increase reach to the disabled and old population, and their
families
● Enhance your brand
● Boost image reputation

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New zealand digital accessibility laws and policies

  • 1. www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com New Zealand Digital Accessibility Laws and Policies By Adam Akinyemi
  • 2. www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com Introduction ● Over 25% of New Zealanders suffer from one form of disability. ● This means about 1 in 4 New Zealanders is suffering from physical, sensory, learning, or other impairment that could affect the use of the web.
  • 3. www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com New Zealand Digital Accessibility Laws and Policies New Zealand ensures barrier-free access to digital content through: ● Human Rights Act 1993, including amendments ● Online Practice Guidelines ● United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD)
  • 4. www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com New Zealand Human Rights Act 1993 and the Bill of Rights Act 1990 ● The Human Rights Act 1993 is a non-discrimination law that prohibits discrimination on multiple bases, including disability. ● The Act prohibits discrimination against different characteristics, including disability. It protects people with visual, motor, hearing, and cognitive, or learning impairments.
  • 5. www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com Online Practice Guidelines ● Online Practice Guidelines were enacted as a mandatory policy in 2003 to propagate the need for accessible online content among government organizations. ● The guidelines consist of different standards and guidance enacted in 2019, among which are the Web Accessibility Standard 1.1 and Web Usability Standard 1.3 moving from Web Accessibility Standard 1.0 (enacted 2013) which is based on Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0. ● Web Accessibility Standard 1.1 mandates all public service and non-public service agencies to meet the NZ Government Web Accessibility Standard from 1 July 2019. The Web Accessibility Standard 1.1 is based on the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 Level AA.
  • 6. www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com Online Practice Guidelines Web Accessibility Standard 1.1 demands every website and web page, produced or maintained, in part or in whole, by the New Zealand government organization, excluding archived web pages to meet WCAG 2.1 Level AA except: ● Complex visual maps that associate information with data points or shapes that cannot reasonably be represented by common identifiers (are exempt from providing text alternatives). ● Alternatives for time-based media (descriptive text transcripts) ● Live synchronized media that does not present high-stakes information or services ● All synchronized media are exempt from providing audio description for all prerecorded video content in the media.
  • 7. www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities The UNCRP came into play in 2018- an international treaty that ensures the rights of people with disabilities. ● The UN legislation under Article 9 recognizes the rights of disabled people to access information and communications, including information and communications technologies and systems. ● Article 21 of the Act specifically requires Parties to take reasonable measures to ensure individuals with disabilities can exercise their right to freedom of expression and opinion. ● The Convention mandates Parties (countries) to ensure disabled persons can seek, receive, and impart information and ideas on an equal basis with non-disabled people and through all forms of communication of their choice. ● The UNCRP has also been ratified by the New Zealand government.
  • 8. www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Cont’d) The Convention mandates Parties (countries) to ensure disabled persons can access information by: ● Providing information in accessible formats in a timely manner and without additional cost; ● Accepting and facilitating the use of alternative communication- sign languages, braille, and all other accessible formats of communication of their choice; ● Urging private entities that provide services to the public, including through the internet, to provide services and information in accessible formats; ● Encouraging the mass media, including those that provide information through the Internet, to make their services accessible; ● Recognizing and promoting the use of sign languages.
  • 9. www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com Compliance ● Agencies to which the Web Accessibility Standard 1.1 (and Web Usability Standard 1.3) applies must be prepared to assess and report on its conformance upon notification. ● In the case of non-conformance, each agency must submit a risk assessment and management plan regarding any areas of non-conformance. ● Although the Web Standards explicitly mandates public service and non-public service departments in the State Services to meet WCAG 2.1 AA (subject to a few exceptions), other State sector organizations are strongly encouraged to implement the Standard. This is due to the Human Rights Act 1993 and Bill of Rights Act 1990’s ratification of the UNCRP.
  • 10. www.whoisaccessible.com adam@whoisaccessible.com Conclusion Regulations compliance mean WCAG 2..1 Level AA compliance. While failure to comply may result in financial or legal penalties, compliance will: ● Prevent legal implications ● Increase reach to the disabled and old population, and their families ● Enhance your brand ● Boost image reputation