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COVID-19 Highlights the Importance of Digital Accessibility and Inclusion

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COVID-19 has reshaped life as we know it. Isolation and shelter-in-place orders have forced us to adopt a digital-dependent lifestyle. For most, the shift has been manageable. Ordering dinner or grocery shopping can still be completed with just a few clicks. We’re able to keep in touch with friends, family and colleagues on our favorite social apps, and can even live stream religious services or gym classes to maintain connections in our communities.

Illustration of hand holding mobile device

But imagine what life would be like without access to the digital apps and services you’ve come to count on. No food delivery apps to summon your dinner, no technology to enable a virtual working day, and no social apps to connect with friends and family.

This is what life is like for people with disabilities.

Too much of the digital world is still inaccessible to too many, and the sudden shift to online living has amplified the disconnect. Most apps and websites aren’t built for people living with things like vision or mobility impairments, and now that many bricks and mortar locations are closed, they’ve been cut off from a number of these essential services.


WATCH OUR 4-MINUTE DOCUMENTARY TO LEARN WHY
DIGITAL EXPERIENCES ARE BETTER WHEN THEY’RE ACCESSIBLE TO ALL PEOPLE.


But it doesn’t need to be this way. If COVID has shown us anything, it’s that organizations can respond when they need to. As the virus became more prevalent, the reaction from brands was swift, with the majority posting statements in a matter of days detailing how they’re responding to the pandemic, and how it will impact customers and employees. It’s time to approach accessibility with that same sense of urgency. One in 5 people self-identify as having a disability – that’s a huge demographic – and ensuring they have equal access to products and services isn’t just the right thing to do, it’s essential.

What can you do?

Getting started down the path to digital accessibility might feel like an overwhelming task, but it doesn’t have to be. With ADA requirements and WCAG 2.1, there certainly is a lot to consider, but the right partner will ensure you achieve and maintain compliance.

eSSENTIAL Accessibility is a pioneering provider of accessibility-as-a-service technology that leading organizations depend on to deliver web, mobile, and product experiences that comply with ADA and other legal requirements.

If you’re ready to make accessibility a priority, request a demo to see our solution in action.

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