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Policy


MN.IT Services

Web Accessibility Policy and Accessibility Issue Resolution

Integral to our function as a government agency is the right of all members of the public to access public information. MN.IT Services is committed to providing access to all individuals—with or without disabilities—who wish to use MN.IT websites, documents, applications or services to obtain information or resources.

Some users may not be able to see, hear or process information in particular formats, may have difficulty reading or understanding text, or may not be able to use a keyboard or a mouse. We have developed our information, website, and web content to ensure compatibility with common adaptive technologies by utilizing the State of Minnesota’s Accessibility Standard, which is based on Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act (as amended) and Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0., in the development of our products and services.

If information on a MN.IT Services web page, document or application is not accessible to you, please use this email to contact MN.IT Services. In it, please provide your contact information, the URL (i.e., link or web address) of the material and the problem you’ve experienced. We'll respond with the information you are seeking. In addition, we will ensure the accessibility issue is corrected to avert continuing accessibility problems. 

We will continue to review and update our documents, websites, and applications to ensure compliance with current and future standards. 

Links to External Publications and Websites:

The MN.IT website may contain links to non-MN.IT publications and web sites. MN.IT has no control over the accessibility of these non-MN.IT publications and external websites. Links are provided as a service to our audience, in an effort to provide additional information where applicable.

MN.IT Website Accessibility Features:

The MN.IT team has incorporated accessibility features into the MN.IT website. These include:

Common Look and Feel.

Most pages on the MN.IT website have a simple design, with a similar layout, making site navigation easier.

Skip Navigation.

The Skip Navigation feature allows users to go directly to the substantive content of the web page.

Accessible Images.

Images on the MN.IT website contain alternative text, which assistive technologies can read aloud to the user to provide access to information presented visually.

Adjustable Text Size.

Text size can be increased with the web browser’s text size adjustment feature.

 
 

Standards


Technology Accessibility

State of Minnesota Accessibility Standard  —  Revised April 29, 2011

Current Version (PDF), effective October 3, 2013, Guidelines (PDF), Exception form (Word).

The goal of the Accessibility Standard is to improve the accessibility and usability of information technology products and services for all government end-users in the State of Minnesota. The standard incorporates the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 and Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

Supplementing the standard is a provision (363A.42 Public Records; Accessibility) effective January 1, 2013 that can make agencies financially liable for inaccessible records and other documents modified or produced after that date.

Vendors

Vendors submitting a response to an RFP may need to complete VPAT (Voluntary Product Assessment Template) forms. The State of Minnesota requires a form for each component of the state standard:
We recommend before completing the forms that all interested parties review the relevant guidance forms in the IT procurement section of this website.

Exceptions

Filing an exception is formally acknowledging that your agency/division is procuring or creating a product or service that is known to not be accessible. The Office of Accessibility will sign, and return, the exception to certify receipt, and file a copy. 
 
 

Resources

If you have questions about accessible technology, or need help, here are a few of the many resources available.

Minnesota's accessibility standard is in response to the accessible technology bill that was signed into law on May 22, 2009, that requires the State to adopt Section 508 standards and Web Content Accessibility guidelines 2.0 (WCAG 2.0) for developing and maintaining accessible statewide information and telecommunications technology systems and services. (Read the final language of HF 1744.)

Here’s some background information on the statutory bases for accessibility.


Other Organizations in Minnesota


Resources from MN.IT

Whether you're planning an implementation, have questions about captioning, or need to create accessible documents, visit IT Accessibility for the State of Minnesota on our website. You'll find  a toolkit that can help implement accessibility at your organization, along with helpful information, tools, and links to online training and resources.   


Other Resources

Social Security Administration Accessibility resources for software developers and electronic content creators  The SSA Accessibility Resource Center offerings include a 129-page document with detailed step-by-step instructions for creating accessible documents in Microsoft Word 2003 and 2007.

Section508 Universe Training  offers online courses for web designers and developers, procurement coordinators, and accessibility coordinators, including topics on accessible video, multimedia and conferencing.

W3C Customizable Quick Reference http://www.w3.org/WAI/WCAG20/quickref

WebAIM WCAG 2.0 Checklist http://webaim.org/standards/wcag/checklist

Accessibility and Usability of E-Government Services http://www.starprogram.state.mn.us/Accessibility_Usability.htm