Avanti West Coast became the first rail operator to achieve accreditation that recognizes its web content as accessible to people with disabilities.
It has achieved Shaw Trust Web Accreditation, which is a mark that confirms people with a wide range of disabilities have tested it and found it accessible.
The company worked with Shaw Trust Accessibility Services to update and modify its website content to comply with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), an international standard for making web content more accessible to people. with disabilities. Shaw Trust is the UK’s largest non-profit social enterprise, providing services and support that empower people to access meaningful employment opportunities.
An assessment by Shaw Trust’s digital auditor and a series of automated and human tests by users with disabilities identified the design and coding changes needed to meet WCAG standards; coding defines the structure of content on the front-end of a website.
To meet the requirements for accreditation, the coding has been changed to ensure that content is accessible to both keyboard-only users and assistive technologies, including screen readers. Changes have also been made to the design of web pages to ensure sufficient color contrast between text and background for visually impaired users.
The Avanti West Coast website is now WCAG 2.1 Level AA compliant, which means it exceeds the minimum requirements of WCAG standards, making it accessible to more people. Obtaining accreditation follows the establishment earlier this year of a dedicated social media forum for customers with disabilities traveling on its route.
Brandon Peat, Head of Accessibility and Inclusion at Avanti West Coast, said: “We want everyone to use the railroad and recognize the importance of a consistent approach being taken. is why we are delighted to be the first rail operator to be granted this accessibility. accreditation for our web content by Shaw Trust.
“Providing an accessible website is the latest project we have completed as part of our commitment to make travel easy and convenient for all of our customers. It has been great working with Shaw Trust to ensure our website meets web content accessibility guidelines and we hope this will allow customers to confidently and independently book and plan their trip whenever they visit. ‘they travel with us.
Joe Manock, National Account Manager, Shaw Trust Accessibility Services, said: “Shaw Trust is absolutely delighted to have awarded Avanti West Coast its WCAG 2.1 AA accreditation for their outstanding work in making their website accessible and inclusive for all. . We were impressed with how they went out of their way to ensure that everyone could access their services. It has been a real pleasure working with the Avanti West Coast team and we look forward to continuing to support them on their accessible journey.