If you have made a complaint and you’re not happy with our response contact the Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS).
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’).
Technical information about this website’s accessibility
WSCC is committed to making its website accessible, in accordance with the accessibility regulations.
This website is partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) version 2.1 AA standard, due to the non-compliance issues listed below.
Content that’s not within the scope of the regulations
The content listed below is non-accessible as we are not required to:
- make documents published before 23 September 2018 accessible, unless they are essential to access a service
- make reproductions of heritage documents accessible
- make online maps accessible
- add transcripts to audio files at Level A/AA.
Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations includes the following:
1. Issues with images
Some images don’t yet have a text alternative (alt text), so the information in them isn’t available to people using a screen reader. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.1.1 (Non-text Content). We plan to add alt text to all images by September 2020. When we publish new content we’ll make sure any images we use meet accessibility standards.
Some images contain text, so people with dyslexia or those using a screen reader will not be able to read the information. This fails WCAG success criterion 1.4.5 (Images of Text). We plan to review where these images are used and reduce their use as much as possible. Where they remain we will ensure any text in the image is given in the alt text.
The bottom of a few of our larger images may be obscured by the title caption when viewed on a larger screen. This fails WCAG success criterion 1.4.4 (Resize Text). This is an issue we aim to fix by September 2020.
2. Issues with PDFs and other documents
Many of our 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 fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.2 (Name, Role, Value).
Some of our documents are essential to providing our services. For example, we have PDFs with information on how people can access our services and forms published as Word documents.
We have created a register of files which are essential for service delivery and are working through these to create HTML pages and accessible documents.
We understand that 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. However, if you need information in an alternative format, please contact us.
3. Issues with video files
Videos we have created and sited on YouTube since 23 September 2018 may not have adequate captions. We are currently focusing our efforts on fixing the most widely used first and will fix the remaining ones by September 2020.
4. Issues with contrast
We are aware that some of the text on the site needs more colour contrast. Contrast issues with text, links, buttons and form elements. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.4.3 (Contrast - Minimum). We are working to improve this.
5. Issues with forms
If an error shows where a mandatory field has not been completed correctly after a form is submitted, the ARIA reference for this error is not correct.
6. Issues with tables
Tables displaying on mobile devices (or small screens) display with the <b> (Bold) tag rather than <strong>. This is listed as WCAG Level A error because most screen readers will not announce words with this emphasis.
7. Issues on landing pages with images
The heading hierarchy is incorrect on landing pages containing images (skipping from <H1> to <H3>). This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.3.1: Info and Relationships. We are trying to fix this issue without affecting other templates adversely.
8. HTML issues
Some of the HTML code we use to embed features such as Google maps, social media feeds and videos includes deprecated (outdated) coding. WCAG recommends this is avoided.
9. Issue with links
On pages where we have used a 'subsite' template, such as Your Space, there are adjacent links that go to the same destination. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.1.1 (Non-text Content). We are currently trying to fix this issue.
On news items and campaigns, links are only identified by colour. We are trying to fix this issue. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.4.1 (Use of Color). We are fixing this issue.
10. Issues with older embedded applications
We have a number of older applications (apps) embedded on our website including:
Due to the age of these apps they have not been created using the latest technologies that assist accessibility, such as HTML5 and ARIA, and some users may have issues using them. We are currently reviewing these apps to decide whether to replace or decommission them before September 2021.
We are aware of the following specific issues with these apps and the WCAG success criterion each fails:
We are also aware of the following issues with online maps:
Although we are not required to make online maps accessible, we will address issues such as these when we upgrade our mapping system.
How we tested this website
This website, and a broad selection of its files, was tested by Shaw Trust Accessibility Services. Shaw Trust also tested seven WSCC sites, two of which are on a different technical platform but ‘skinned’ to look like our website and embedded in this site.
They reported their findings to us on 11 April 2019 and will be rechecking the site for improvements at the end of January 2020.
We also used automated software (Siteimprove) ourselves to test the accessibility of www.westsussex.gov.uk.
What we’re doing to improve accessibility
We are working to resolve all identified accessibility issues which are within our control by 23 September 2020.
Our services are also working with suppliers to resolve any identified accessibility issues where we do not have direct control over their product.
When this statement was prepared
This statement was prepared on 22 January 2020 following technical and editorial improvements based on Shaw Trust’s observations. It was last updated on 16 June 2020.