Website accessibility

We have developed this site with the feedback and support of our service users, staff, carers and wider partners to make this site as accessible as possible for all visitors.

Accessibility Statement

How you can use this website

On this website, you should be able to:

  • Use the Switch Colours function to change colours and contrast levels
  • Zoom in up to 300% with text staying visible on the screen, and most images scaling without resolution loss
  • navigate most of the website using a keyboard
  • navigate most of the website using speech recognition software
  • read most of the website using a screen reader, including the latest versions of JAWS, NVDA, and VoiceOver
  • We’ve used Plain English to make the information as simple as possible to understand
How to improve your online experience if you have a disability

While we make every attempt to make sure you can use and get the most out of this website, there are ways you can improve your online experience by making some small changes to your computer and web-browser settings.

There’s a range of advice and resources available to help you make changes including; changing font size and colour, removing images and making your mouse or keyboard easier to use:

How accessible this website is

We have tried to make our site as accessible as possible for all visitors and this site has been developed with the feedback and support of our service users, staff, carers and wider partners.  All parts of the site meet Level A criteria in the World Wide Web Consortium’s Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.1.  We will continue to work with HMA our website provider to audit and identify any new problems and work towards achieving Level AA standards.

This website will work on Internet Explorer 8 and above, Safari, Firefox and Chrome.  The site will not work correctly with older versions of Internet Explorer (IE) such as IE6 or IE7 as these browsers to do not support responsive code.

There are a limited number of pages on the website that rely on JavaScript, these include locations pages which feature Google maps, however each of our services pages contains full address and contact details of the appropriate locations.

Pages using JavaScript will not be accessible to visitors using assistive technologies or those who do not have JavaScript enabled in their browsers.

We know that some parts of our website aren’t fully accessible:

  • we have a large number of publications and documents which are in PDF format, and haven’t been designed for accessibility
  • some of our older PDF files contain broken links which do not resolve – we do not intend to fix these as it is a disproportionate burden for files which are no longer in active use
  • some content is displayed on our website as a text-based picture or infographic, such as organisational structures, and these cannot be easily scaled on screen or read by screenreaders
  • some link text doesn’t make sense when read on its own (for example ‘click here’)

Where our features are not accessible, we have conducted a disproportionate burden assessment in line with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.  We have also created an accessibility improvement roadmap to show what we are doing to improve the accessibility on our website and by when.

Disproportionate burden assessment – conversion of PDF documents

Our site contains a large number of PDFs created in previous years, especially in our data and corporate publications.

We do not intend to recreate documents such as Board and Council of Governor agendas and minutes in accessible versions as this would be a disproportionate burden. The accessibility regulations don’t require us to fix PDFs or other documents published before 23 September 2018 if they’re not essential to providing our services.

Our assessment of the burden of making these PDFs into accessible HTML formats is that:

  • there are hundreds of historic documents created by the organisation
  • each document would require a number of hours of work to be recreated in a fully accessible version (estimated based on extensive experience of converting the active documents at between 2 and 30 hours per document, depending on length and complexity, plus any required checking and formal sign-off process
  • many of the documents contain complex elements which are difficult to retrospectively convert, such as detailed tables, graphs, and diagrams

Also relevant to this decision are that:

  • Interest in these documents is low – few people access them
  • These documents do meet accessibility requirements for a large number of users, although some groups may find them disproportionately difficult
  • Requests for accessible versions of these documents are rare

Where documents are no longer in active use, or no longer being updated, there is a high cost in terms of employee hours to convert.  We consider the costs of converting these older documents where there is little evidence of demand would be a poor use of limited staff time, and would represent a disproportionate burden on the organisation in terms of cost.

We will always assist with requests for our publications to be provided in different formats on a case-by-case basis.

We will work to ensure that our priority documents which get the highest use are fully accessible, as HTML web pages, and hope to have completed this process by the end of 2020.

How to get information in an accessible format

We aim to present all important information as HTML webpages, but often we create guides and easy read documents that you can download and print. These are in PDF (Portable Document Format) and Word document format. If you have any problems downloading or reading these files, you may need to download additional software:

If you have problems accessing information on this website, or would like any of our work in a different format like large text, easy read, audio recording, BSL or another language. We’ll do our best to make these available within a couple of weeks, but some requests may take longer depending on the scale of the work.

Please contact our Interpretation and Translation Support Team and let them know which information you would like and what format you would like it in.

Our easy on the i service works to produce information in Easy Read that is accessible for visitors with learning disabilities.  Please visit our easy on the i service page to find out more.

What we are doing to improve

We are actively looking to improve the accessibility on our website and the improvements below have been identified on our current work schedule.

Target date Item of work Type of work Status
September 2020 Finish removing unclear links, like ‘See more’ Content In progress
September 2020 Ensure all images are appropriately ALT tagged. Content In progress
September 2020 Audit of text-based images and replication of this content into HTML Content In progress
December 2020 Ensure priority documents which get the highest use are fully accessible, as HTML web pages Content In progress
December 2020 Colour contrast Design Awaiting content freeze date
December 2020 Creation of a fully searchable services directory Design Awaiting content freeze date
December 2020 Move to Mobile First Technology Awaiting content freeze date
January 2021 Layout and navigation of service pages Navigation In progress

Last edited: September 2020