Website Owner Responsibilities

All UC Berkeley websites, those in the berkeley.edu domain and any website affiliated with the University, must comply with both campus and UC-systemwide policies. 

The UC Information Technology Accessibility Policy requires all websites to be accessible to people with disabilities, including those who use assistive technologies.

In order to comply with the IT Accessibility Policy and meet the WCAG 2.0 level AA standards, campus site owners must:

  1. Choose a platform that is capable of creating accessible content.
    1. Open Berkeley is a fully-managed website solution that relies on accessible design and development practices, and offers tools for website builders that support creating accessible content.
    2. For any other DIY (Do-it-Yourself) platform or framework (e.g., WordPress, Drupal, Expression Engine, Django, Rails, Gatsby, React, custom-built, etc.), use the DIY Accessibility Checklist and do Keyboard-Only Testing to evaluate the platform.
      1. Consult the platform/framework documentation about accessibility.
      2. If using managed site-building services or third-party developers, consult with the provider on how they will work with you in a timely manner to address accessibility issues specific to your site. Accessibility should always be included in any contract agreement with third-party developers and agencies. The vendor should have completed the Accessibility Questionnaire as part of the contract.
  2. Use that platform’s tools correctly to create accessible content.
    1. Review the DIY Accessibility Checklist and the Top 10 Tips for Making Your Website Accessible.
    2. Enroll the site in Siteimprove.
  3. Manage the underlying source code to fix discovered issues.
    1. If your website is built on Open Berkeley, this is included in the service.
    2. If your website is using another platform/framework or is custom-built, you are responsible for managing and understanding the underlying source code.
    3. Do not use any third-party accessibility overlays (some examples include UserWay and accessiBe).

  4. Caption all video content.
  5. On your website, include a link to the Report a Website Access Barrier page.

Given the above requirements, the following third-party no-code hosting services cannot be used with a berkeley.edu domain:

  • Softr
  • Squarespace
  • Webflow
  • Weebly
  • Wix

If you have questions about accessibility compliance, please contact Ella Callow, ADA/504 Coordinator and Disability Compliance Officer at ellacallow@berkeley.edu.

Site-by-Site Audit and Remediation for DIY sites

Access Compliance Requirements for Do-It-Yourself (DIY) sites that can manage their own source code (WordPress, Drupal, Expression Engine, Django, Rails, Gatsby, React, custom-built, etc.):

  • Enroll your site in Siteimprove and provide access to your report showing a score that meets the current minimum as required by DAC.
  • Provide an annual report of a manual accessibility audit conducted by a recognized third-party accessibility service.
    • Siteimprove will not catch issues that require manual testing (e.g., keyboard accessibility).
    • Additional reports must be provided after a major website redesign.
  • If any disability complaint is received, the site owner must remediate within a few weeks or agree to have the site shut down.

What Happens if a Visitor to your Website Reports A Barrier?

Website visitors can report problems with any Berkeley.edu website by filling out the Report a Web Access Barrier form.

When they fill out the form:

  1. DAC is notified of the barrier report.
  2. DAC will contact the website owner and provide the report.
  3. The website owner must remediate the problem within 30 days.
  4. For Open Berkeley websites, the Open Berkeley team will assist the website owner.
  5. For all other websites: If the website owner needs additional resources and information on website accessibility in order to remove the barrier, they can use the resources listed below. Depending on the severity of the barrier:
    1. it may be necessary to consult a third party accessibility specialist. If so, this is the responsibility of the site owner.
    2. If the reported issues cannot be remediated within 30 days, the site owner may be required to shut the site down until the issues are fixed.

Resources

References