Section 508 establishes requirements for electronic and information technology developed, maintained, procured, or used by the Federal government. Section 508 requires Federal electronic and information technology to be accessible to people with disabilities, including employees and members of the public.
About Section 508
An accessible information technology system is one that can be operated in a variety of ways and does not rely on a single sense or ability of the user. For example, a system that provides information only in visual format may not be accessible to people with visual impairments and a system that provides information only in audio format may not be accessible to people who are deaf or hard of hearing. Some individuals with disabilities may need accessibility-related software or peripheral devices in order to use systems. Section 508 requires systems to work with the accessibility-related solutions.
Section 508 applies to a broad variety of electronic and information technology (E&IT) including:
- web pages and internet or intranet based services and applications;
- software and applications (off-the-shelf and custom developed);
- telecommunications including telephone systems, telephones, voice mail and interactive voice response systems, and fax machines;
- duplication, printing and copying equipment;
- stand-alone stations (or information kiosks);
- multimedia presentations including video conferencing, television broadcasts, training media;
- support services, and documentation.
What is DRC's Role?
DRC can help you understand the requirements of Section 508 and what it means for your organization. Whether it's clarifying what "accessible" means in terms of electronic and information technology, or understanding the full scope of what is covered and what isn't, we're here to unravel the intricacies of Section 508.
Assistive Technology Demonstrations
Seeing assistive technology work and how it interacts with computer applications and web pages can be an important tool for understanding the need for Section 508 requirements. If you'd like to schedule a demonstration, call (202) 493-0625 to schedule an appointment.
Software/Web Page Evaluations
Got a web site or new custom application you're developing? You'll need to know whether or not your application or site is 508 compliant. While we can't "certify" that your project is compliant, we can help you evaluate whether it meets the guidelines. In many cases, where problems do exist, we can help you find solutions before your project goes live.
Section 508 Resources
For more information on Section 508, including the technical requirements, procurement policy and regulation, and a variety of online training opportunities, contact:
GSA Office of Government-wide Policy Center for IT Accommodation (CITA)
1800 F Street, N.W.
Room 1234, MC:MKC
Washington, DC 20405-0001
(202) 501-4906 (voice)*
U.S. Architectural and TransportationBarriers Compliance Board
1331 F Street, N.W. Suite 1000
Washington, DC 20004-1111
* If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability, please dial 7-1-1 to access telecommunications relay services.