Last Updated: March 5 2015
Article by Victoria Prince and Stephanie Young
Borden Ladner Gervais LLP
This is Part 2 of a 3-part series
In Part 1, we had the Accessibility Directorate of Ontario answer questions regarding websites being significantly refreshed and mobile apps.
In this Q&A, the Accessibility Directorate of Ontario answers questions regarding micro-sites. To see who falls under a “Large Organization” or “Designated Public Sector Organization”, see Part 1 of this series.
If a Large Organization or Designated Public Sector Organization creates a micro-site in 2014, which is not password-protected, does it need to conform with WCAG 2.0 Level A?
Answer: Section 14 of the Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation includes requirements for internet websites for designated public sector organizations and large private and not-for-profit organizations. There are currently no requirements for intranets or extranets for designated public sector organizations or large private/not-for-profit organizations.
If a large private/not-for-profit organization or designated public sector organization creates a micro-site in 2014 which is not password-protected, and that micro-site is considered an internet site, it would need to conform with WCAG 2.0 Level A. It is up to an organization to determine if that micro-site is considered an internet, intranet or extranet.
Does the answer to the previous question change if the micro-site is password-protected?
Answer: For large private/not-for-profit organizations or designated public sector organizations, only internet websites have accessibility requirements. An internet website may have a separate section with controlled/restricted access, which may be considered an extranet website. An extranet website is considered an extension of an organization’s intranet website or internet network. Extranet websites allow outside users with internet connections controlled access to an organization’s internal network usually for specific business or educational purposes. An extranet website is available to a target audience and not the public generally.
There are currently no accessibility requirements under the Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation for intranet or extranet websites for large private/not-for-profit organizations or designated public sector organizations. As a result, the information contained on the webpages once a user has entered that portion of the site that is only available to registered users would be considered an “extranet” and therefore would not have to conform with WCAG 2.0. Despite this, users can request that this content be provided in an accessible format under Section 12 of the Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation Accessible Formats and Communication Supports.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.