7. According to a 2015 ABS survey:
• 4,290,100 (18.3%) of Australians
have some sort of disability.
• 3,392,600 (14.5%) of Australians
have a disability that restricts daily
8. In other words:
• at least 1 in 5 Australians have
some sort of disability
• almost 1 in 7 Australians have a
disability that restricts daily
9. These ratios also increase with age.
• Around 2 in 5 Australians, 65
years or older, has some sort of
53. Other barriers that are not technically
disabilities but can have a major
impact on peoples lives include
literacy and language.
54. According to a 2009 ABS survey:
• 7.3 million (44%) of Australians
had literacy skills at Levels 1 or 2
• 6.4 million (39%) at Level 3
• 2.7 million (17%) at Level 4/5
55. A large percentage of Australians
with lower levels of literally are non-
native English speakers. This group
is often referred to as “English as a
Second Language” (ESL).
56. For example, 17% of Aboriginal and
Torres Strait Islander people who
speak an Indigenous language do
not speak English well or at all.
57. This is why it is vital for web
content writers to consider reading
levels, keyword density and the
avoidance of technical “jargon”.
58. These levels can be measured
using algorithms such as Flesch
Kincaid and the Gunning Fox Index.
59. Anyone involved in writing content
should avoid terms like “dumbing
down” as this is not only insulting, it
is a fundamental misunderstanding
of eﬀective communication.
60. Why is it important to be
aware of these barriers?
61. 1. We need to be aware of how our
users interact with our products in
all sorts of situations and diﬀerent
62. 2. Solving problems for situational
and short-term barriers often
beneﬁts disabled audiences as
63. 3. Some groups, such as ESL, even
though not classed as a disability,
need special attention.
64. Legal vs ethical responsibility
65. All Australian websites and mobile
applications must comply with the
World Wide Web Access: Disability
Discrimination Act 1992
66. The relevant Advisory Note states:
“All existing non-government
websites and web content should
comply with WCAG 2.0 to a
minimum level of AA conformance
by December 31, 2013.”
67. This means more than just websites
and apps; it means all content that
is presented to users - including
Word ﬁles, PDF ﬁles and much more.