October 28, 2014
Accessibility is a growing concern in the WordPress community at large. Accessibility in web design means creating a site that everyone can use. The U.S. Census Bureau says that over 47 million Americans have a disability of some kind. The UN and the World Bank say this adds up to 650 million people worldwide. That’s around 10% of everyone in the world. At some point in our lives, disability will affect most of us, no matter who you are. Every decision you make as a developer affects hundreds of thousands of people (or more!).
The mission statement of WordPress is to democratize publishing through Open Source, GPL software. WordPress ‘out of the box’ is already a great way to make a website accessible. As theme developers we can do more. People who can’t see or hear, others that can’t use a mouse, people who use special assistive devices to access the web — these people need to access websites. As theme developers, we need to know about accessibility.
Accessibility Statement: “Accessibility is the degree to which a product, device, service, or environment is available to as many people as possible.” Cynthia Waddell
There are 2,655 themes in the WordPress.org theme repository. Only 12 of those themes have the tag ‘accessibility-ready’. We can meet those accessibility guidelines with just a few extras steps. We will start with basic things like creating readable headlines and adding alt text to images. From there we will cover some of the information in the Section 508 and WCAG 2.0 Guidelines.
Trisha will provide real world examples from the perspective of her visually impaired son.
We are all responsible for making our part of a project accessible. You will need to shake things and change your processes a bit in order to achieve accessibility.