Accessibility statement for West Suffolk Council websites

These websites are run by West Suffolk Council:

We want our websites to be easy to use for as many people as possible, regardless of ability or technology. We are continuously working to:

  • make the website text as simple as possible to understand:
  • make navigation as easy as possible. You should be able to:
    • listen to most of the website using a screen reader
    • navigate most of the websites using just a keyboard
    • navigate most of the websites using speech recognition software
    • Zoom in to 200% without text spilling off the screen

Although we try to work to the accepted standards for accessibility and usability, it may not always be possible on all of the websites. Sometimes the use of third-party applications may cause accessibility issues for some users. If you experience any problems please contact us so we can work to improve your experience.

Advances in technology mean that most devices and web browsers have their own built in accessibility aids or assistive technology to help you to access the internet.

AbilityNet has advice on making your device easier to use if you have a disability.

How accessible this website is

We know some parts of these websites aren’t fully accessible but we are working where possible to correct this and your help is welcome in spotting anything we have missed:

  • many PDF documents aren’t fully accessible to screen reader software
  • live video streams don't have captions
  • some of our online forms are difficult to navigate using just a keyboard
  • you can’t skip to the main content when using a screen reader on some of our websites
  • some of the html code is not fully compliant
  • some of the code (aria) which is used by screen readers is not fully compliant
  • some of the systems this website links to are provided by third parties and are not fully accessible.

Our plans on how we are addressing these issues can be found in our What we're doing to improve accessibility section.

What to do if you can’t access parts of this website

If you are having issues accessing information on this website or need it in a different format like accessible PDF or large print:

We’ll consider your request and get back to you within seven working days.

Reporting accessibility problems with this website

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of this our websites.

If you find any problems that aren’t listed on this page or think we’re not meeting accessibility requirements, email: communications@westsuffolk.gov.uk. Please include:

  • ‘Website accessibility’ in the subject line
  • the web address (URL) of the page with the issue
  • details of the issue.

Enforcement procedure

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is responsible for enforcing the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018 (the ‘accessibility regulations’). If you’re not happy with how we respond to your complaint, contact the Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS).

Contacting us by phone or visiting us in person

Find out how to contact us.

Technical information about this website’s accessibility

West Suffolk Council is committed to making its website accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.

This website is partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.1 AA standard, due to the non-compliances listed below.

Non accessible content

The content listed below is non-accessible for the following reasons.

Non compliance with the accessibility regulations

Images

  • Some images don’t have a text alternative, so the information in them isn’t available to people using a screen reader. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.1.1 (non-text content).
    We plan to add text alternatives for all images by September 2020.
  • Some images contain text, so people with dyslexia or using a screen reader will not be able to read the information. This doesn't meet WCAG success criterion 1.4.5 (images of text).
    We plan to remove images containing text by September 2020.
  • When we publish new content we’ll make sure our use of images meets accessibility standards.

Links

  • On some pages the same link text is used for links going to different destinations, so people might not know the difference. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 2.4.4 (link purpose, in context).
  • Some links are identified only by colour This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.4.1 (use of colour).

We plan to make links and link destinations clear all pages by September 2020. When we publish new pages we’ll make sure link text meets accessibility standards.

Headings

On some pages the headings are not nested correctly, which may confuse people using a screen reader. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.3.1 (information and relationships).

We plan to make sure headings are set up correctly on pages by September 2020. When we publish new content we'll make sure heading use meets accessibility standards.

PDFs and other documents

Some of our PDFs and Word documents are essential to providing our services, but may not be structured so they’re accessible to a screen reader. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.2 (Name, role value).

By September 2020, we plan to either fix these or replace them with accessible HTML pages. Any new PDFs or Word documents we publish should meet accessibility standards.

Disproportionate burden

We believe that the cost to fix some issues now would be a disproportionate burden within the meaning of the accessibility regulations. We will make another assessment in the future, for example when supplier contracts are up for renewal.

There are some issues we don't believe need to be fix now. For example something that may technically be considered an accessibility issue, but is actually unlikely to make it difficult for someone to use the website.

Navigation and accessing information

There’s no way to skip the repeated content in the page header on some of our websites (for example, a ‘skip to main content’ option). This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 2.4.1 (bypass blocks).

Interactive tools and transactions

Some of our interactive forms are difficult to navigate using a keyboard. For example, because some form controls are missing a ‘label’ tag.

Some of our forms are built and hosted through third party software and ‘skinned’ to look like our website. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.3.1 (information and relationships).

We’ve assessed the cost of fixing the issues with navigation and accessing information, and with interactive tools and transactions. We believe that doing so now would be a disproportionate burden within the meaning of the accessibility regulations. We will make another assessment when the supplier contract is up for renewal.

Other web development issues

  • On some pages HTML is used to format content rather than CSS. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.3.1 (information and relationships).
  • On some pages iFrame has no 'title' attribute or the 'title' attribute is empty. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.2 (name, role, value).
  • On some pages the italics-tag 'i' is used to highlight text. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.2 (1.3.1 information and relationships).
  • On some pages the tabbing order is not logical. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 2.4.3 (focus order).
  • On some pages some of the code (WAI-ARIA) which is used by screen readers is incorrect or redundant. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.2 (name, role, value).

Content that’s not within the scope of the accessibility regulations

PDFs and other documents

Many of our older PDFs and Word documents don’t meet accessibility standards - for example, they may not be structured so they’re accessible to a screen reader. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.2 (name, role value).

The accessibility regulations don’t require us to fix PDFs or other documents published before 23 September 2018 if they’re not essential to providing our services. For example, we don’t plan to fix old PDF newsletters, posters or campaign materials that might still be published and accessed through our website. .

Any new PDFs or Word documents we publish will meet accessibility standards.

Live video

Live video streams don’t have captions. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.2.4 (captions - live).

We don’t plan to add captions to live video streams because live video is exempt from meeting the accessibility regulations.

How we tested our websites

This website is tested for accessibility, quality assurance and search engine optimisation every week. The automated tests are carried out by Siteimprove https://siteimprove.com/ who produce reports detailing any issues which we then work to resolve. They have a scoring system and rate the results out of 100. The score can only be seen as a guide - some issues are minor but affect many pages, some are more major but only affect a few pages. We continually monitor the results and constantly work to resolve the issues.

We test Accessibility score Link to latest accessibility report
https://www.buryfestival.co.uk/ 91.8% SiteImprove accessibility report – Bury Festival website 12 September 2019
http://www.businessfestival.org/ (currently hosted externally) 85.4% SiteImprove accessibility report – Business Festival website 17 September 2019

http://www.mildenhallhub.info

77.2% SiteImprove accessibility report – Mildenhall Hub website 12 September 2019

https://www.moyseshall.org

This includes content in our third party event booking system Spektrix

77.6% SiteImprove accessibility report – Moyses Hall website 16 September 2019
https://recruitment.westsuffolk.gov.uk 74.3% SiteImprove accessibility report – West Suffolk Recruitment website 12 September 2019

https://www.theapex.co.uk

This includes content in our third party event booking system Spektrix

65.4% SiteImprove accessibility report - The Apex website 16 September 2019

https://www.weststow.org

This includes content in our third party event booking system Spektrix

65.4% SiteImprove accessibility report – West Stow website 16 September 2019

https://www.westsuffolk.gov.uk

these include our third party systems:

97.1% SiteImprove accessibility report – West Suffolk Council website 12 September 2019
https://www.westsuffolkmarkets.co.uk 72.1% SiteImprove accessibility report – West Suffolk Markets website 12 September 2019

https://whatsonwestsuffolk.co.uk

This includes content in our third party event booking system Spektrix

65.6% SiteImprove accessibility report – What's On West Suffolk website 16 September 2019
https://www.angliarevenues.gov.uk (we work in partnership with Anglia Revenues Partnership.) 61.3% SiteImprove accessibility report – Anglia Revenues Partnership website 16 September 2019

What we’re doing to improve accessibility

We are continually working to improve accessibility. We regularly receive reports form SiteImprove, the automated system we use to check accessibility, quality assurance and search engine optimisation (SEO) and look to resolve issues on a weekly basis. We also respond to any issues identified by visitors to the websites and regularly review pages.

We work with our third party suppliers to make sure their systems are as accessible as possible, and to resolve issues as quickly as possible.

We are working to move all of our forms online so you can complete them on screen. Some of our forms are PDF (Portable Document Format) documents which you will then have to print and post to us, and a few are in MS Word format which you can complete electronically and email to us. If you experience any problems with the forms please contact Customer Services: email customer.services@westsuffolk.gov.uk or phone 01284 763233.

This statement was prepared on 20 September 2019. It was last updated on 20 September 2019.