Website accessibility policy
Our website accessibility objective
The Ministry of Justice is committed to ensuring that its corporate website is accessible to the widest possible range of people. We are actively working to increase the accessibility and usability of our website and in doing so we follow published standards and guidance.
We aim to achieve the standards required for compliance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 1.0 level AA using working practice recommended by the Guide to good practice in commissioning accessible websites (PAS 78), published by the Equality and Human Rights Commission and Guidance for government web teams issued by the Central Office of Information.
The website is designed to meet the following standards:
- W3C WAI Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 1.0 Conformance Level Double A
- Valid W3C XHTML 1.0 Transitional
- Valid W3C CSS 1.0
Accessibility assurance and improvement programme
To maintain the quality of this website the web team have a programme of accessibility assurance which means we test and review pages on the website using web development validation tools, online accessibility processes, expert review and testing by users with disabilities. A programme of work is being carried out in the first quarter of 2009 to refresh and re-test major areas of the website. Any outstanding issues will be reported to the website editorial board for resolution by December 2009.
The continuing quality of the website depends on controls and procedures applied to commissioning, design, coding and editorial policies.
Where documents or webpages are provided by external suppliers, they are required to conform to the accessibility standards and quality criteria which apply to the website as a whole.
To support these processes staff in the Ministry of Justice web team maintain the appropriate level of expertise using online resources and courses provided by RNIB or other training suppliers.
New content published on the website is subject to a quality assurance process by trained and experienced staff, and is governed by the website editorial policy, which includes adherence to the needs of people with disabilities and the aim of providing appropriate content for the range of users of the website.
The Ministry of Justice Disability Equality Scheme (7.3.1) confirms that, in providing information, we seek to ensure that the information is:
- Clear, comprehensive, accurate and relevant
- Appropriate to the reader or user of the information
- Proportionate to the subject matter
- Targeted and timely
- Accessible to all our customers
Exceptions and alternative formats
Where testing or review shows that accessibility criteria are not being met in some part of the website, the web team will take remedial action or will contact the owners of the document to fix the problem. In some cases there can be practical difficulties in delivering a solution. Currently known exceptions to the website accessibility standards are:
- Some forms available for download are not in a fully accessible format. In these cases, alternative formats are available on request
- In the Procedure Rules, the category index pages are not fully accessible to users of assistive software because the word “link” is used more than once as link text. As an alternative, the website search engine provides focussed searching within the relevant set of Procedure Rules
- In the Procedure Rules, PDF copies of the Rules and Practice Directions are provided in addition to the html version. Because of the legacy content of these documents, they may not be fully accessible. This content is provided in an accessible format on the website as html webpages
You can help us to maintain the quality of our website by giving us your comments and suggestions for improvement. Please let the web team know if you have a problem using this website. We will do our best to investigate and fix any issues as part of our ongoing programme of improvements.
Web Team, Communications Directorate
Ministry of Justice