Accessible Information and Communication: A Guide for Small Business

Making your small business accessible may not be in the forefront of your mind as a small business owner. However, according to the Global Alliance on Accessible Technologies and Environments (GAATES), the proportion of people living with a disability in Canada is projected to increase from one in seven to one in five or about 700,000 people over the next twenty years due to the country’s aging population.

GAATES has produced a guide which will cement the information already on hand in your business as well as provide you with information and resources to enhance access to your services for clients.

The comprehensive guide is divided into four main sections starting with an Introduction followed by Requirements for Accessible Information and Communication Supports, Implementation Strategies and Resources.

·         Requirements for Accessible Information and Communication Supports.  Do you have questions relating to your existing business? This section has practical answers to common questions raised by business owners on the technical requirements for accessibility in the workplace. It also deals with employee training policies, accessibility planning and compliance.

·         Implementation Strategies. Communications with customers are vital to a successful business. However, the technique for making information accessible to people should be considered depending on whether they have a disability. For instance, some printed media may be unsuitable for a person if they cannot see. The guide has a practical list of methods to remove the barriers of delivering your message to a person who needs the information in a different format.

·         Resources. A comprehensive and practical guide to writing techniques and presentation tips for popular programs such as Microsoft® Word™ and Microsoft® Power Point™, as well as, Adobe Acrobat which has a number of accessible features built into it. The section also provides information on best practices for accessible design and a list of helpful websites which help organizations understand their web requirements.

For more information on accessible information and communications, click here.