When you think of making your website accessible, who do you think of as those users? People with physical or mental disabilities are usually the first people that spring to mind here, especially as accessibility laws and guidelines on equal access for people with disabilities to prevent discrimination are front of our mind.
Yes, these users, who we would describe as having a ‘permanent’ disability, do make up many the people benefitting from your efforts to be accessible, and are who the accessibility laws we work to are aiming to protect. But there are a whole range of circumstances where users can have the same ‘disability’, either temporarily, or due to a situation they find themselves in.
So, this Global Accessibility Awareness Day we wanted to raise awareness of all accessibility considerations. For example, making sure you add captions or a transcript for the person that can’t hear the audio on your product or showreel video. Yes, they might have a permanent hearing disability, but they could just as easily be in a busy café or tube train and, having forgotten their headphones, simply can’t hear it over the background noise.
Or the person you’re designing for as they may only have the use of one hand on a mouse, keyboard, or mobile device after having a stroke, could just as much be someone who has a broken arm in a cast for a few weeks, or someone pacing at 2am holding a crying baby scrolling on their phone.
There are many more situations we could add here to demonstrate ways users will be on your site and not be 100% able to use it as intended.