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Telstra announces accessibility initiatives

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Telstra has announced several new initiatives aimed at improving access for people with disabilities to telecommunications services.

The company has launched a portal on Telstra.com that lets users search for features that may assist specific disabilities such as speech, vision, cognitive and dexterity impairment.

For vision, features include: screen reader, adjustable font-size, high contrast mode and voice output of caller ID.

For cognition, features include: simplify display, photo associated phone book, supports third party apps and supports gesture navigation.


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Local Government: Practical accessibility steps

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Local councils have been urged to consider taking practical steps to improve the accessibility of their websites so that they can better meet their policy and legal compliance requirements.

Speaking ahead of his presentation on web accessibility at the Disability Inclusion and Liveable Communities Forum in Sydney on 12 September, Media Access Australia accessibility expert Dr Scott Hollier said meeting accessibility compliance was easier than many councils thought.


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Aussie boy Huey inspires internet accessibility for all

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At age four, Huey Springer became ill with a life-threatening condition which doctors identified as a result of head fluid build-up, requiring numerous trips to the hospital and major surgery.

Hueyify logo


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Accessibility: the missing essential in cloud services

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Independent access expert Media Access Australia has released a research paper on the need for commercial services and governments to incorporate accessibility for people with disabilities into their cloud services.

The research finds that improving the useability of cloud services is an essential criterion in organisations efforts to maximise their customer engagement opportunities and ensure that they are not left behind by their competitors, some of whom have already discovered the commercial potential of access.


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Disability employment: three easy steps

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Getting ready to either help or directly employ people with disabilities is easier than you think. Here are three reasons why.

Workplace systems and technology

A major misconception is that there is an expense in setting up computers, office equipment and other systems so that they can be used by people with disabilities.

While this may once have been the case, it’s simply not true anymore. ‘Disabled employment’ no longer means ‘expensive’ or ‘too hard to set up’ and should not be viewed as a barrier.

That’s because the mainstream office technology that we all use—Windows, iOS, OS X and Android-based systems—is now packed with built-in accessibility features.


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Accessibility & the Cloud: Current & Future Trends - WA Accessibility Camp 2014

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Dr Scott Hollier's presentation at the WA Accessibility Camp 2014 is now available to download via SlideShare.

Presented at the WA Accessibility Camp 2014, Dr Scott Hollier provides an analysis of the features, benefits & issues regarding accessibility of cloud services, including outcomes and risks of implementing cloud technology in business vs. consumer settings. Access recommendations are provided for government, industry and consumers with disabilities.


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The NDIS: a role-based ICT approach - Disability Employment Conference 2014

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Dr Scott Hollier's presentation at the Disability Employment Conference 2014 is now available to download via SlideShare.

Speaking at the Disability Employment Conference 2014, Dr Scott Hollier discusses the necessity of ICT accessibility, providing an in-depth outline of Media Access Australia's 'Service Providers Accessibility Guide'. The presentation below covers the topics of policy & legislation, web accessibility, document creation, email & social media, Windows, Mac, iOS, Android and more.


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NDIS service providers urged to consider ICT accessibility

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Service providers to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) have been advised to consider the accessibility of their information communications technology (ICT) to ensure that they can fully support people with disabilities.

Speaking ahead of his presentation at the Disability Employment Conference, held 6-7 August on the Gold Coast, Media Access Australia’s web accessibility expert and W3C member, Dr Scott Hollier, said service providers to the NDIS need to consider how people with disabilities could better access their websites, smartphone apps, documents and other information.


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Making cloud computing accessible

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With cloud computing becoming increasingly central to daily life, cloud providers have been urged to consider the access requirements of consumers with disabilities.

According to Media Access Australia’s resident web accessibility expert, Dr Scott Hollier, cloud—the process of delivering computing resources, data, services and media over an internet connection rather than directly from a personal computer or a mobile device—now enables everything from internet banking and shopping, to purchasing insurance and superannuation, to paying bills, taxes and registering cars.

However, while businesses still had a choice of whether to adopt cloud services or not, consumers often had little choice, he said.

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Web accessibility vital to elections

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Media Access Australia’s resident web accessibility expert, Dr Scott Hollier, has warned that a lack of accessible websites could lead to voters with disabilities potentially miscasting their votes at the next federal or state election.

Speaking ahead of his presentation on disability and digital divides, to be given at the Australian and New Zealand Communication Association (ANZCA) conference in Melbourne, Dr Hollier said that a lack of web accessibility could have profound effects on society.

“If you look at the last federal election as a case study, a voter with a disability would have had a very difficult time in gaining information to guide their votes based on the lack of accessibility of the websites of the major parties,” he said.

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