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Accessibility statement

Accessibility statement for the South Holland District Council website

This accessibility statement applies to the sholland.gov.uk website. 

This website is run by South Holland District Council in collaboration with Public Sector Partnerships Services Ltd. We want as many people as possible to be able to use this website. For example, that means you should be able to:

  • change colours, contrast levels and fonts;
  • zoom in up to 300% without the text spilling off the screen;
  • navigate most of the website using just a keyboard;
  • navigate most of the website using speech recognition software;
  • listen to most of the website using a screen reader (including the most recent versions of JAWS, NVDA and VoiceOver).

We aim to make the website text as simple as possible to understand.

AbilityNet has advice on making your device easier to use if you have a disability.

How accessible this website is

We know some parts of this website are not fully accessible:

  • Most PDF and Word documents are not fully accessible to screen reader software.
  • Some pages and attachments may not be written in clear, plain English.
  • Some pages have empty heading elements.
  • Some videos do not have transcripts or visible captions/subtitles.
  • Some empty links exist within the site.
  • Some links are not easily identifiable.
  • Some redundant links exist on the home page of the site.
  • Some iframes are used to embed videos which do not have titles.
  • A number of data tables throughout the site do not contain row or column headings.
  • Some pages do not have unique page titles.
  • On some forms, session timeouts can cause data to be lost where the page button has not been activated within a certain timeframe.
  • The garden waste and bulky waste forms contain unlabelled search fields within selectors, do not present error messages in the correct manner for screen reader users and do not have a logical tab order for keyboard-only users.
  • Some links to documents, such as PDFs, do not include the file type within the link text.

Feedback and contact information

If you need any information provided on this website in an alternative format that suits your needs such as accessible PDF, large print, easy read, audio recording or braille, please contact us.

Report an accessibility problem

We welcome any suggestions you may have to improve the accessibility of our website. If you experience any accessibility problems that aren't mentioned on this page or if you think any part of this website doesn't meet the accessibility requirements, please let us know. Email website@sholland.gov.uk to report an accessibility problem.

Enforcement procedure

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is responsible for enforcing the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018 (the 'accessibility regulations').

If you contact us about an accessibility problem and aren't satisfied with our response, you can contact the Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS) in the following ways:

Technical information about this website's accessibility

South Holland District Council is committed to making its website accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.

Compliance status

This website is partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.1 (WCAG 2.1) AA standard, due to the non-compliances and exemptions listed below.

Non-accessible content

The content listed below is non-accessible for the following reasons.

Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations

PDFs and other documents

A number of PDFs and documents published since 23 September 2018 are inaccessible to screen reader users.

This fails on the following WCAG 2.1 success criterion:

  • 1.1.1 Non-text Content: All non-text content that is presented to the user has a text alternative that serves the equivalent purpose, except for the situations listed below (Level A).
    • Controls, Input: If non-text content is a control or accepts user input, then it has a name that describes its purpose. (Refer to Success Criterion 4.1.2 for additional requirements for controls and content that accepts user input.)
    • Time-Based Media: If non-text content is time-based media, then text alternatives at least provide descriptive identification of the non-text content. (Refer to Guideline 1.2 for additional requirements for media.)
    • Test: If non-text content is a test or exercise that would be invalid if presented in text, then text alternatives at least provide descriptive identification of the non-text content.
    • Sensory: If non-text content is primarily intended to create a specific sensory experience, then text alternatives at least provide descriptive identification of the non-text content.
    • CAPTCHA: If the purpose of non-text content is to confirm that content is being accessed by a person rather than a computer, then text alternatives that identify and describe the purpose of the non-text content are provided, and alternative forms of CAPTCHA using output modes for different types of sensory perception are provided to accommodate different disabilities.
    • Decoration, Formatting, Invisible: If non-text content is pure decoration, is used only for visual formatting, or is not presented to users, then it is implemented in a way that it can be ignored by assistive technology.

These are being reviewed and will be:

  • removed and recreated as standard HTML web page content, or
  • removed and recreated as accessible PDFs/documents, or
  • may be assessed and fall within 'disproportionate burden'.

This work aims to be completed by 31 May 2022.

Empty headings

There are empty headings on some pages.

This fails on the following WCAG 2.1 success criterion:

  • 1.3.1 Info and Relationships: Information, structure, and relationships conveyed through presentation can be programmatically determined or are available in text. (Level A)

We plan to review and amend page headings by 31 May 2022. When we publish new content we'll make sure our use of page headings meets accessibility standards.

Video

Any pre-recorded video produced by the council from 23 September 2020 should include captions or transcripts - ideally both. Where any video published since then exists, this could fail on the following WCAG 2.1 success criterion:

  • 1.2.1 Audio-only and Video-only (Prerecorded): For prerecorded audio-only and prerecorded video-only media, the following are true, except when the audio or video is a media alternative for text and is clearly labelled as such: (Level A)
    • Prerecorded Audio-only: An alternative for time-based media is provided that presents equivalent information for prerecorded audio-only content.
    • Prerecorded Video-only: Either an alternative for time-based media or an audio track is provided that presents equivalent information for prerecorded video-only content.
  • 1.2.2 Captions (Prerecorded): Captions are provided for all prerecorded audio content in synchronized media, except when the media is a media alternative for text and is clearly labelled as such. (Level A)
  • 1.2.3 Audio Description or Media Alternative (Prerecorded): An alternative for time-based media or audio description of the prerecorded video content is provided for synchronized media, except when the media is a media alternative for text and is clearly labelled as such. (Level A)

We plan to review and amend any that may have been published without captions and transcripts by 31 May 2022. When we publish new content we'll make sure our use of pre-recorded video meets accessibility standards.

Links

A number of empty links have been identified throughout the website.

These will be removed and appropriate guidance put in place to ensure empty links do not reoccur. 

This fails on the following WCAG 2.1 success criterion:

  • 2.4.4 Link Purpose (In Context): The purpose of each link can be determined from the link text alone or from the link text together with its programmatically determined link context, except where the purpose of the link would be ambiguous to users in general. (Level A)

This work will be completed by 31 May 2022 and will be continually assessed thereafter.

Links without sufficient descriptive text may exist on the website, making it harder for screen reader users to navigate the site. 

This fails on the following WCAG 2.1 success criterion:

  • 1.3.1 Info and Relationships: Information, structure, and relationships conveyed through presentation can be programmatically determined or are available in text. (Level A)
  • 2.4.4 Link Purpose (In Context): The purpose of each link can be determined from the link text alone or from the link text together with its programmatically determined link context, except where the purpose of the link would be ambiguous to users in general. (Level A)

Work to amend any such link text under the control of our Communications and Web Teams will be completed by 31 May 2022 and will be continually assessed thereafter.

Some redundant links exist on the home page of the website.

These are adjacent links that go to the same location (such as a linked image and an adjacent linked page name that go to the same page) this results in additional navigation and repetition for keyboard and screen reader users.

This fails on the following WCAG 2.1 success criterion:

  • 1.1.1 Non-text Content: All non-text content that is presented to the user has a text alternative that serves the equivalent purpose, except for the situations listed below. (Level A)
  • 2.4.4 Link Purpose (In Context): The purpose of each link can be determined from the link text alone or from the link text together with its programmatically determined link context, except where the purpose of the link would be ambiguous to users in general. (Level A)

We are currently working with our website platform supplier to address this issue, and aim to have a fix in place by 31 March 2022.

Frames

When a screen reader user hears a list of frames on a page, the user needs to know the purpose of each one.

Some iframes are used to embed videos and maps on our pages which do not have titles.

This fails on the following WCAG 2.1 success criterion:

  • 1.3.1 Info and Relationships: Information, structure, and relationships conveyed through presentation can be programmatically determined or are available in text. (Level A)
  • 2.4.1 Bypass Blocks: A mechanism is available to bypass blocks of content that are repeated on multiple Web pages. (Level A)

We plan to review and add titles for all embedded videos and maps by 31 May 2022. When we publish new content we'll make sure our use of frames meets accessibility standards.

Tables

A number of data tables throughout the site do not contain row or column headings. 

This fails on the following WCAG 2.1 success criterion:

  • 1.3.1 Info and Relationships: Information, structure, and relationships conveyed through presentation can be programmatically determined or are available in text. (Level A)

We plan to review and amend any data tables by 31 May 2022. When we publish new content we'll make sure our use of tables meets accessibility standards.

Page titles

There are a small number of instances where the page titles are not unique to the content and fail to provide a clear description.

This fails on the following WCAG 2.1 success criterion:

  • 2.4.2 Page Titled: Web pages have titles that describe topic or purpose. (Level A)

We plan to review and amend page titles by 31 May 2022. When we publish new content we'll make sure our use of page titles meets accessibility standards.

Transactional timeouts

When using some legacy online forms, sessions can timeout where the page button has not been activated within a certain timeframe and the user is not warned of this.

This fails on the following WCAG 2.1 success criterion:

  • 2.2.1 Timing Adjustable: For each time limit that is set by the content, at least one of the following is true: (Level A)
    • Turn off: The user is allowed to turn off the time limit before encountering it; or
    • Adjust: The user is allowed to adjust the time limit before encountering it over a wide range that is at least ten times the length of the default setting; or
    • Extend: The user is warned before time expires and given at least 20 seconds to extend the time limit with a simple action (for example, "press the space bar"), and the user is allowed to extend the time limit at least ten times; or
    • Real-time Exception: The time limit is a required part of a real-time event (for example, an auction), and no alternative to the time limit is possible; or
    • Essential Exception: The time limit is essential and extending it would invalidate the activity; or
    • Twenty Hour Exception: The time limit is longer than 20 hours.

These forms were built using a legacy form package and are on our roadmap to be replaced. As such, we plan to have remedied this issue by 31 December 2022.

Subscription to the Garden Waste Collection Scheme and Bulky Waste Collection Request forms

These forms contain unlabelled search fields within selection inputs.

This fails on the following WCAG 2.1 success criterion:

  • 1.1.1 Non-text Content: All non-text content that is presented to the user has a text alternative that serves the equivalent purpose, except for the situations listed below. (Level A)
    • Controls, Input: If non-text content is a control or accepts user input, then it has a name that describes its purpose. (Refer to Guideline 4.1 for additional requirements for controls and content that accepts user input.)
  • 1.3.1 Info and Relationships: Information, structure, and relationships conveyed through presentation can be programmatically determined or are available in text. (Level A)
  • 3.3.2 Labels or Instructions: Labels or instructions are provided when content requires user input. (Level A)
  • 4.1.2 Name, Role, Value: For all user interface components (including but not limited to: form elements, links and components generated by scripts), the name and role can be programmatically determined; states, properties, and values that can be set by the user can be programmatically set; and notification of changes to these items is available to user agents, including assistive technologies. (Level A)

These forms also rely solely on visual cues to relate errors to the user.

This fails on the following WCAG 2.1 success criterion:

  • 3.3.1 Error Identification: If an input error is automatically detected, the item that is in error is identified and the error is described to the user in text. (Level A)
  • 3.3.3 Error Suggestion: If an input error is automatically detected and suggestions for correction are known, then the suggestions are provided to the user, unless it would jeopardize the security or purpose of the content. (Level AA)

These forms also have an illogical tab order, making it difficult for some users to navigate.

This fails on the following WCAG 2.1 success criterion:

  • 2.4.3 Focus Order: If a Web page can be navigated sequentially and the navigation sequences affect meaning or operation, focusable components receive focus in an order that preserves meaning and operability. (Level A)

These forms were built using a legacy form package and are on our roadmap to be replaced. As such, we plan to have remedied this issue by 31 December 2022.

Disproportionate burden

Utilising the outcomes of the audit conducted by Shaw Trust and continuous automated audit via Silktide, we will actively publish any accessibility issues that arise where we may assess such issues as a disproportionate burden. Any such issues will be fully evaluated and published publicly as part of this statement.

Content that's not within the scope of the accessibility regulations

PDFs and other documents

Any PDF or document that is not essential to providing our services and was published prior to 23 September 2018 will not be reviewed and as such, may not meet the accessibility standards.

Live video

Any live videos produced by the council will not have captions or a transcript, as these are exempt from the accessibility regulations.

Pre-recorded video

All pre-recorded videos produced by the council since 23 September 2020 may not have subtitles, captions or transcripts, as they are not required to do so under the accessibility regulations.

What we're doing to improve accessibility

Our website has been audited by Shaw Trust Accessibility Services to test its compliance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.1), on levels A and AA. The report from the digital accessibility assessment of our website was received on 31 July 2020.

Continuous testing is being handled in-house by our Communications Team and the Public Sector Partnership Services Web Team, through the use of an automated tool known as Silktide. This is in addition to utilising the manual skills and experience of staff within the teams.

Web Editors are being trained to create accessible content.

Preparation of this accessibility statement

This statement was originally prepared in February 2020. It was last reviewed on 6 January 2022.

The last manual tests were carried out during November 2021 by the Public Sector Partnership Services Web Team to determine the viability of a number of fixes that had been put in place. The fixes have addressed accessibility issues with the drop-down menu and hamburger menu, the carousel on the home page (moving images, title contrast), images without alternative text, colour contrast on buttons, and missing link text and focus.

The pages tested were: