The complexities of digital inclusivity at nonprofits and charities, shedding light on ways to address them, centering around the crucial need for nonprofits to embrace technology and ensure digital accessibility for all, particularly individuals with disabilities.
The conversation commences with Ellen Owens-Karcsay, from, elaborating on the concept of digital accessibility and its significance, particularly during a time when organizations are rapidly adopting digital solutions without adequately considering accessibility for individuals with disabilities.
Addressing the question of how people with disabilities use technology, Ellen provides comprehensive insights into the various ways individuals with disabilities access technology, including screen readers, screen magnifiers, specialized mouse or keyboard devices, and more. She emphasizes the importance of website and application coding to ensure compatibility with assistive technologies. The discussion continues with an exploration of the three primary concerns regarding digital accessibility: 1. Business case 2. legal compliance 3. brand equity, and Ellen underscores that organizations should consider the broad impact on their business, the legal implications, and the importance of building equity, and an inclusive brand.
The conversation touches on the roles of organizations like the American Foundation for the Blind and the National Council for Independent Living in advocating for digital accessibility.
Questions arise about timelines for implementation and funding opportunities for digital accessibility initiatives. Ellen Owens-Karcsay emphasizes that organizations should educate themselves about digital accessibility and integrate it into their day-to-day processes. Regarding funding, she notes that although funding opportunities exist, digital accessibility is often an overlooked component in proposals. However, she believes that increasing awareness and advocacy can lead to more funding allocations for digital inclusivity efforts.
The conversation wraps up with a discussion on the federal government’s role in digital accessibility and the potential for funders to become champions of this cause once they become aware of its importance.