Accessibility

Accessibility Statement

This website is run by South Somerset District Council.

We want as many people as possible to be able to use this website. For example, that means you should be able to:

  • change colours, contrast levels and fonts
  • zoom in up to 300% without the text spilling off the screen
  • navigate most of the website using just a keyboard
  • navigate most of the website using speech recognition software
  • listen to most of the website using a screen reader (including the most recent versions of JAWS, NVDA and VoiceOver)

We’ve also made the website text as simple as possible to understand.

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

How accessible this website is

We know that some parts of our website aren't fully accessible:

  • most older PDFs aren't fully accessible to screen reader software
  • some of our online services are hosted by third party suppliers and you may find navigating these difficult depending on their level of web accessibility

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

If you need information on this website in a different format like accessible PDF, large print, easy read, audio recording or alternative format:

We’ll consider your request and get back to you in 10 working days.  Please note we aim to provide information within this timescale, however there may be a delay in providing certain formats.

If you can’t view the map on our ‘council offices' page, contact us for directions. 

Reporting accessibility problems with this website

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of this website. If you find any problems that aren’t listed on this page or think we’re not meeting accessibility requirements please contact us:

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

Our main offices have audio induction loops, our Connect office in Petters House, Yeovil also has audio streamer devices available to use in the meeting rooms there or if you contact us before your visit we can arrange a British Sign Language (BSL) interpreter.

Technical information about this website’s accessibility

South Somerset District 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

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. When we publish new content we’ll make sure our use of images meets accessibility standards.

Navigation and accessing information

There’s no way to skip the repeated content in the page header (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.

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.

Some of our PDFs and Word documents are essential to providing our services. For example, we have PDFs with information on how users can access our services, and forms published as Word documents. By September 2020, we plan to either fix these or replace them with accessible HTML pages.

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. 

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

How we tested this website

This website was last tested on 29 August 2019. The test was carried out internally.

We used an accessibility checker to test the pages across our site.

We also used the AXE and WAVE tools to check the pages for AA compliance.

We tested:

  • our main website platform, available at southsomerset.gov.uk
  • third party services based on a different technical platform but ‘skinned’ to look like our website

What we’re doing to improve accessibility

We plan to improve accessibility on this website by:

  • testing web accessibility with an independent assessor
  • regularly monitoring the accessibility of our website
  • making our PDF documents (created after 22 September 2018) as accessible as possible
  • where possible, creating HTML pages rather than PDF documents
  • working with third party service providers to include WCAG 2.1 AA compliance

This statement was prepared on 29th August 2019. It was last updated on 21st September 2019.

Thank you. You response is appreciated.

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