Government launches digital accessibility awareness campaign

The UK Government Digital Service (GDS) has launched a new website to raise awareness of new digital accessibility regulations that come into force on 23 September 2019.  

As part of its campaign to raise awareness, GDS has released a website and information pack that clarifies how organisations will be affected by the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018. The pack includes an information sheet that clearly outlines the deadlines for implementing changes to ensure digital accessibility and GDS is encouraging organisations to share the pack and its video (see below) to help spread the word about the new regulations. 

What is required?

By 23 September 2019, public sector bodies have a legal duty to make sure websites and apps meet accessibility requirements, and will need to:

  1. Understand how the regulations will impact their organisation
  2. Check the accessibility of their websites
  3. Make a plan to fix any problems they find
  4. Publish an accessibility statement

Although GDS will provide guidance for public sector bodies, organisations must interpret the regulations and guidance themselves, seeking legal advice where required.

GDS will continue to review and update guidance to support public sector bodies, and you can also visit its online accessibility community groups for knowledge-sharing

Deadlines for different websites

  • Public sector websites published on or after 23 September 2018 must be compliant by 23 September 2019. Any websites due to be published after this date must be compliant before going live.
  • Public sector websites published before 23 September 2018 must be compliant by 23 September 2020.
  • Apps need to meet the regulations by 23 June 2021.

Further guidance about the regulations

Help share the campaign