This Thursday, May 16, 2019 marks the eighth anniversary of Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD), the annual worldwide community event to raise awareness about digital accessibility.
Conferences, webinars, and public events will be held around the world with the goal of people talking, sharing, and learning about accessibility, inclusion, and people with different disabilities.
Digital accessibility is a part of everyone’s life, whether you use a phone, tablet, or desktop computer to interact with friends, family, customers, and organizations.
Over the past few years, digital accessibility has improved through the use of captioned videos, alternative text for Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, and accessible websites.
But there’s more to be done.
What is Global Accessibility Awareness Day?
Jennison Asuncion read Joe’s blog post and contacted Joe to discuss how they could make that happen.
The first GAAD was held less than eight months later in May 2012.
The idea spread quickly throughout the web community over the years, as groups, schools and universities, companies, and individuals planned events and activities to raise awareness about digital accessibility.
In 2015, the date to celebrate GAAD was moved to the third Thursday in May.
If you want to participate in GAAD, but don’t live near an inclusive design or accessibility meetup group hosting the event, I’ve got you covered!
Here are three ways you can participate online in GAAD 2019.
1. Access All Areas 2019
Sessions are focused on workplace design, barriers in virtual reality, subtitles, games, and inclusive design.
The event will be held 10:00am to 5:00pm British Standard Time.
Here’s their current schedule:
- 10:00am: Intro and welcome
- 9:45am: Keynote: Allan MacKillop, Diversity and Inclusion Disability Lead; ‘Neurodiverse Workplace Design’ – Sean Gilroy
- 11:00am: Videos: ‘BBC Access Services’ – Richard Kurzik; ‘Exploring Barriers in VR’ – Jamie Knight + Lion; PANEL: Behind the camera with Paul Bepey
- 12:40pm to 1:40pm – Lunch, exhibitors, and networking (videos): ‘How Big Should Subtitles Be?’ – Nigel Megitt and Edmund White; TBC: Henny Swan
- 2:40pm-3:10pm: Break (videos): ‘Genie: Accessible Games for Everyone’ – Graham Densham; ‘Accessibility of Spoken Interfaces’ – Leonie Watson; PANEL: In front of the camera with Gareth Ford Williams and DANC
- 4:30pm: Live broadcast concludes.
2. How To Promote Accessibility At Your Organization
Learn how get buy-in for web accessibility initiatives and how to start an accessibility initiative at your school or district.
In this one-hour webinar from Finalsite, you’ll learn about:
- Common challenges and barriers faced by schools
- How to overcome misperceptions about digital accessibility
- How to frame accessibility as a standard
- How you can start an accessibility movement to get your community and stakeholders on board
- Steps to to train employees to update websites for accessibility
The webinar will be held May 16, 2019 at 1:00pm Eastern Time. While the webinar is free, pre-registration is required.
3. ADA and the Internet – Legal Update
As part of their week-long celebration of accessibility and inclusive design, Level Access is presenting a webinar about the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and how it applies to websites, mobile apps, and other digital content.
Kristina Launey, Managing Partner at Seyfarth Shaw LLP and co-creator of the popular ADA Title III Blog joins Level Access’s Chief Accessibility Officer Jonathan Avila in discussing the current ADA litigation landscape.
Highlights include recent appeals court decisions and how they could affect your organization. After this webinar, you’ll walk away with strategies and best practices for managing risk.
The free webinar is Thursday, May 16, 2019 at 2:00pm Eastern Time. Pre-registration for the Level Access webinar is required.
Global Accessibility Awareness Day is open to everyone who wants to learn about digital accessibility.
Free webinars, like the ones I listed above, can help you learn about digital accessibility in your work, school, and at home.
Can’t make it to any of the webinars?
Unplug your mouse and only use the keyboard to navigate websites for the day. Learn how to use a screen reader and navigate the web for an hour.
Which online GAAD events do you plan to attend?