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Inrochtaineacht Gréasáin

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Web accessibility is about making the content of our websites as accessible as possible to all, including people with disabilities. 

In 2012, the EU Commission published a proposal for a Directive on the accessibility of public sector websites. Following this proposal, the Department led Ireland's negotiation of the proposed Directive. Together with the National Disability Authority (NDA), we commissioned a research study on web accessibility. This research study was an action under the National Digital Strategy.

In 2014, we published a report on the outcomes of the research study. The outcomes focused on the accessibility of key public services for citizens in the EU Member States. The report will help inform practical approaches to addressing web accessibility issues.

On 3 May 2016, the EU Commission announced that they had reached an agreement on the new EU Directive. After adoption by the Council in July 2016, the European Parliament approved the Directive on 26 October 2016.

On 2 December 2016, the new Directive on the accessibility of websites and mobile applications of public sector bodies was published. On 22 December 2016 it entered into force.  Ireland, along with other Member States, has 21 months to transpose the Directive into Irish law. The Directive requires public sector websites and mobile applications to achieve specific accessibility standards. It also requires Member States to regularly monitor and report to the Commission on the accessibility of public sector websites and mobile applications.

For more information on web accessibility, visit The Centre for Excellence in Universal Design at the NDA. Here you will find helpful guides and practical advice for anyone involved in web development and design.