Global Accessibility Awareness Day 2021
Resources, Event Planning and Awareness Building
GAAD takes place on May 20 this year and we’d like to encourage all our members to take part so that we can build awareness and play our part to increase the accessibility of digital content to people with print disabilities, particularly during this challenging time when many of us are working from home. If your organization has an accessibility advocate then this is their chance to build awareness and co-ordinate activities that your teams may be able to take part in whilst self-isolating.
How do you want to celebrate GAAD this year? We’ve put together a few ideas to get you started and we would love to hear from you about any activities or events that you are planning.
You can easily do this from your home office so long as you and your team are online and communicating
- Put together a blog piece in advance of GAAD. This will help to raise awareness amongst your colleagues about what GAAD is all about. We have resources and tools that you can include in your post to spark interest and encourage questions! A good place to start is our Introduction to Inclusive Publishing.
- Alternatively, you are welcome to cross-post any of the interesting articles that we have published on Inclusive Publishing during the last year. Contact us if you need help finding the correct piece for your newsletter.
- Think about updating your accessibility statement in time for GAAD. Have a look at the work of ASPIRE which is all about increasing the effectiveness of your organizational accessibility statement
- Hold an online social event to promote your support of accessible publishing. Set up a “party” online to discuss awareness issues and next steps for your company when you return to the workplace. (Zoom offers the most accessible online conferencing experience we have found).
GAAD is a great chance to find out for yourself what it’s like to be a print disabled reader. You can put together all manner of sessions to focus on this but here are a few ideas:
- Go mouseless for an hour—unplug your mouse and only use your keyboard (tab/shift tab, arrow keys, enter and spacebar) to navigate and interact with content.
- Experience reading using assistive technology – try 10 minutes with a screen reader for example
- You may wish to set up a UX session so that your colleagues can experience accessibility features such as Voice Over.
- Try your hand at writing image descriptions—collect a few images from the content that you publish together with some contextual information. See how your colleagues fare in writing alt text! This could be a fun challenge that would be easy or organise for those of you working from home.
Encourage your colleagues to watch one of our free webinars available on the DAISY YouTube channel. We have many different sessions available already and lots more planned for the future so this would be a terrific time to ask your co-workers to choose something new and interesting. If you host a discussion following a webinar viewing you could initiate some interesting debate which we would love to hear about.
Other Events We’ve Heard About
There are some amazing events already being planned to celebrate GAAD 2021 and we encourage you to check out a few on our events pages as well as the full list on the GAAD listings.
You may also be interested in the publisher’s toolkit that we promote on inclusive publishing in celebration of GAAD. Feel free to send us your comments and additions to this publishing resource.