Accessibility statement

Our website accessibility statement, and how to report problems or request information in another format.

This accessibility statement applies to the website.

This website is run by West Sussex County Council. We want as many people as possible to be able to use it. For example, this means you should be able to:

  • change colours, contrast levels and fonts
  • zoom in up to 300 per cent 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 some parts of this website aren’t fully accessible as:

  • some of our documents aren’t yet fully accessible to screen readers
  • our mapping system does not work well on mobile devices
  • the GovDelivery sign-up modal (a pop-up element that still keeps the main window visible) spills off screen at higher zoom levels.

Feedback and contact information

If you need information on this website in a different format, such as accessible PDF, large print, easy read, audio recording or braille use the form below to contact us.

We’ll consider your request and get back to you in ten working days.

Reporting accessibility problems with this website

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

Website accessibility contact form (external link)

If you wish to make a formal complaint, please complete our complaints form.

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 have made a complaint and you’re not happy with our response, please contact the Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS).

Technical information about this website’s accessibility

West Sussex County Council is committed to making this website accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.

Compliance status

This website is partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) version 2.1 AA standard due to the non-compliances and exemptions listed below.

Non-accessible content

Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations

The content listed below is non-accessible for the following reasons.

  • Some images do not have suitable descriptions. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.1.1 (Non-text content).
  • There is an empty element in the templates of our campaign landing page, news landing page, directories search, subsite landing page, forms pages and A to Z pages. This fails WCAG (1.3.1 Info and relationships).
  • When loading images from an image gallery in modal, the keyboard focus doesn't pass. This fails 2.4.7 (Focus visible).
  • There is no text on Previous/Next pagination buttons on some results and guide pages to make users aware of new content. This fails WCAG 2.4.4 (Link purpose – in context).
  • Maps used on our directory pages are set as aria-hidden by default, but in some circumstances can still receive focus. This fails WCAG 4.1.2 (Name, role, value).
  • Table column and row headers automatically display the <b> (Bold) emphasis tag rather than <strong> on mobile devices or small screens, which most screen readers do not announce. This fails WCAG 1.3.1 (Info and relationships).
  • Our content management system automatically adds a border attribute to some tables. This fails WCAG 1.3.1 (Info and relationships).
  • Some lengthy search filter options on our job search pages cause a small amount of horizontal scrolling on small screen devices. This fails WCAG 1.4.10 (Reflow).
  • Content section tabs on some 'campaign' pages, and some logos and clickable image banners on our 'subsite' templates, aren't sufficiently highlighted on focus. This fails WCAG 2.4.7 (Focus visible).
  • The required field error message for the GovDelivery sign-up modal does not operate correctly for screen readers. This fails WCAG 3.3.3 (Error suggestion).
  • There are contrast issues with some elements on our job search application page, with the number of search results on our job search page, with the 'promoted' tags on some news articles, with the 'no related news items' message on some news search filter pages, with the numbers displayed on some directory filter pages (on smaller screens) and for links in some contact detail panels. This fails WCAG 1.4.3 (Contrast – minimum).
  • Some links on our job search page have the same text but point to different pages. This fails WCAG 2.4.9 (Link purpose - link only). 
  • There are some select elements on the job search application page which do not have accessible labels. This fails WCAG 4.1.2 (Name, Role, Value).
  • Some 'div' elements used on our subsite templates use aria-labels without a correct role applied to the element. This fails WCAG 4.1.2 (Name, Role, Value).
  • On our subsite templates the aria-label on the menu button changes in some scenarios and no longer matches the button text. This fails WCAG 2.5.3 (Label in name). 
  • In content implemented using markup languages, elements may not analyse a string or text into logical syntactic components correctly. This fails WCAG 4.1.1 (Parsing). It includes:
    • active link phone numbers which include a space
    • text within the tags on iframes used to embed Google Maps 
    • our campaign and place to visit templates, which have a duplicate ID
    • an empty ID attribute on the script tag that loads the GovDelivery sign-up modal
    • the time element on several pages where the text content is not in the required format
    • an empty action attribute on the form element of the 'Local suppliers' search page
    • H2 headings under the 'DT' element (which defines a term/name in a description list) on the job details page
    • a duplicate ID, ARIA attribute and main element on the job application page
    • an invalid text element under H3 on the 'Find a school' page
    • a value attribute that is not allowed on the form upload field of the drug litter form.

PDFs and non-HTML documents

  • Some of our PDFs and MS Office documents don’t meet accessibility standards – for example, they may not be structured so they’re accessible to a screen reader. This fails WCAG 4.1.2 (Name, role, value).
  • Some of our resource documents, such as posters, are designed to be downloaded and printed, so these may not be fully accessible.
  • Some documents that are essential to providing our services, such as forms published as Word documents, may not yet be accessible.
  • Some of the documents we link to are owned by third parties and may not be accessible.

Accessibility regulations don’t require us to fix PDFs or other documents that we own and published before 23 September 2018 unless they’re essential to providing our services. If you need information in another format, please use our form to contact us.


We are aware of some issues with forms created on our Umbraco content management system:

  • Difficulty with navigation using just a keyboard. This fails WCAG 2.1.1 (Keyboard).
  • Some HTML errors and stray markup such as <p>, <li> and <strong> tags are sometimes added. This fails WCAG 4.1.1 (Parsing).
  • Multiple email fields are named the same on some forms, usually due to the separate global feedback form, which also has an email address field. This fails WCAG 1.3.1 (Info and relationships).
  • Dropdown fields have a blank option element. This fails WCAG 4.1.2 (Name, role, value).
  • If an error shows where a mandatory field has not been completed correctly after a form is submitted, the aria reference (which defines ways to make web content and web applications more accessible to people with disabilities) for this error is not correct. This fails WCAG 3.3.1 (Error identification).
  • Not all form fields use the 'autocomplete' attribute where it would be helpful to do so. This fails WCAG 1.3.5 (Identity input purpose).
  • It is not possible to leave a star rating using a keyboard on the global feedback form. This fails WCAG 2.1.1 (Keyboard).

Issues with older embedded applications

We have a number of older applications (apps) embedded on our website including:

We are aware of the following specific issues with these apps and the WCAG success criterion each fails:

  • Alt text missing – WCAG 1.1.1 (Non-text content).
  • Bold tag used to highlight text – WCAG 1.3.1 (Info and relationships).
  • Content not accessible with keyboard – WCAG 2.1.1 (Keyboard).
  • Contrast issues with text, links, buttons, and form elements – WCAG 1.4.3 (Contrast – minimum).
  • Document language missing – WCAG 3.1.1 (Language of page).
  • Empty label text – WCAG 1.3.1 (Info and relationships).
  • Form elements not grouped – WCAG 1.3.1 (Info and relationships).
  • Form fields named the same on a page - WCAG 1.3.1 (Info and relationships).
  • Mandatory fields on forms not marked – WCAG 1.3.1 (Info and relationships).
  • Missing first level heading – WCAG 1.3.1 (Info and relationships).
  • Missing form labels – WCAG 1.3.1 (Info and relationships).
  • Missing skip to content option – WCAG 2.4.1 (Bypass blocks).
  • Missing page title – WCAG 2.4.2 (Page titled).
  • Missing table headings and summaries – WCAG 1.3.1 (Info and relationships).
  • Orphaned form labels – WCAG 1.3.1 (Info and relationships).
  • Skipped heading level – WCAG 2.4.1 (Bypass blocks).
  • Suspicious/non-descriptive alt text – WCAG 1.1.1 (Non-text content).

We will work with services to address the usability of these apps either by replacing or improving them.

Third-party systems

Some of our systems are supplied by third parties and have their own statements:

Although these sites may use our footer template, each is covered by their supplier's accessibility statement rather than WSCC's.

We have also created several interactive reports using Microsoft Power BI. This includes those on West Sussex Life. These are not fully accessible, but we have made them as accessible as we can. If you need information from any of the reports, please use our form to contact us.

Content that is not within the scope of the accessibility regulations

We are not required to:

  • make documents published before 23 September 2018 accessible, unless users need them to access a service
  • add captions to videos published before 23 September 2020
  • make reproductions of heritage documents accessible
  • make online maps accessible
  • add transcripts to audio files published before 23 September 2020.

Please use our form to contact us if you need help with content not within the scope of the accessibility regulations.

What we’re doing to improve accessibility

We're working to resolve all identified accessibility issues which are within our control. Our services are also working with suppliers to resolve any identified accessibility issues where we do not have direct control over their product.

Preparation of this accessibility statement

This statement was prepared on 22 January 2020. It was last reviewed on 2 April 2024.

This website was last tested during January/February 2022 by Shaw Trust Accessibility Services. We also tested the accessibility of a selection of page templates, using automated software such as Siteimprove, Axe and WAVE.

We currently maintain an accreditation with Shaw Trust which was originally awarded in February 2022.

Accessibility accreditation from Shaw Trust
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  • West Sussex County Council will only use this email address to respond to any issues raised.