Technical information about this website's accessibility
Aberdeenshire Council is committed to making its website accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.
This website is partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.1 AA standard, due to the non-compliances and exceptions listed below.
Non accessible content
The content listed below is non-accessible for the following reasons.
Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations
Some of our PDFs and other documents are essential to providing our services. For example, we have PDFs with information on how users can access our services, and forms published as Word or PDF documents. Some of them don't meet accessibility standards, they may be scanned PDFs or they may not be marked up correctly for assistive technologies. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criteria 4.1.2 (name, role value), 1.4.5 (images of text) and 1.4.9 (images of text - no exception). We plan to either fix these or replace them with accessible HTML pages over time as we review sections of this website. When we publish new content we will make sure our content meets accessibility standards.
Some images don't include a meaningful text alternative so people using a screen reader are not provided with an accurate description of what the image presents. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.1.1 (non-text content). We plan to add a meaningful alternative text to all images over time as we review sections of this website. When we publish new content we will make sure our content meets accessibility standards.
Not all prerecorded videos published on this website before 23rd September 2020 have captions or audio. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.2.2 (captions - prerecorded). We plan to add closed captions and audio or add a transcript file for these videos over time as we review sections of this website. When we publish new content we will make sure our content meets accessibility standards.
Some links don’t make sense when read on its own (for example 'here' or 'find out more'). On some pages the same link text is used for links going to different destinations, so people might not know the difference. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 2.4.4 (link purpose - in context). On some pages links within text are identified only by colour and they are missing additional visual cues such as underline. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.4.1 (use of colour). We plan to make all links accessible over time as we review sections of this website. When we publish new content we will make sure our content meets accessibility standards.
Form fields on the "Was this page helpful" form don't include meaningful labels. This means that it is harder for anyone using assistive technologies to know where to input their answer for a specific question on the form. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criteria 1.3.1 (information and relationship), 3.3.2 (labels or instructions) and 4.1.2 (name, role, value).
The myAberdeenshire button contains focusable child elements. They are not announced by screen reader but they still appear in the tab order making navigation more difficult. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.2 (name, role, value).
Some lists don't contain semantically correct parent or child elements. This means they might be ordered incorrectly and screen readers might not be able to read these lists accurately. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.3.1 (info and relationships).
The language is not set in the code on some of our forms and this makes it more difficult for assistive technologies to accurately covert text to speech. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 3.1.1 (language of page).
On some elements such as search box, the colour contrast ratio between text and background isn't sufficient. This makes it difficult for someone with a visual impairment to see the content properly. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.4.3 (contrast, minimum).
Some of our links such as social media icon links don't receive focus when active or selected. They also don't include descriptive link names and because of that they are not accessible by keyboard or screen reader. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criteria 2.4.4 (link purpose in context) and 4.1.2 (name, role, value).
On some forms, input fields, such as a text box or a radio button list, are missing labels or have incorrect labels associated with them. Without these labels people using assistive technologies might not know where to input their answer to a specific question on the form. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criteria 1.3.1 (information and relationship), 3.3.2 (labels or instructions) and 4.1.2 (name, role, value).
Certain ARIA roles aren't used correctly. This means that content might not be announced accurately to anyone using as a screen reader. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criteria 1.3.1 (information and relationship).
Some tables aren't marked up correctly which can cause issues when using assistive technologies to access information within those tables. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.3.1 (information and relationship).
The forms have a 20 minute timeout that you cannot turn off or extend. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 2.2.1 timing adjustable.
We plan to fix accessibility issues with our forms as and when we make updates to them. When we build new forms we will make sure they meet accessibility standards.
We are required by law to carry out disproportionate burden assessments where we are not able to meet our legal obligation to reach the WCAG 2.1 AA accessibility standard.
We use an open source solution as our website publications platform. It is written in a programming language our IT developers don't use so it is difficult to make improvements. There are other limitations within the platform that have negative impact on the user experience, for example lack of flexible page layouts and poor presentation of links. We plan to replace the platform with a solution that provides better user experience and there would be disproportionate burden for us to fix outstanding accessibility issues on the existing platform.
Some of our forms were build using a form builder called Formstack. We are ending our subscription with Formstack in January 2022 and we are migrating these forms to a different solution. There would be disproportionate burden for us to fix outstanding accessibility issues with Formstack forms.
Documents supplied by the public and other organisations
Documents that are supplied to us by other organisations (when we didn't commission or pay for them) or by members of the public will not be edited to make them accessible. We believe that doing so would be a disproportionate burden within the meaning of the accessibility regulations.
Content that’s not within the scope of the accessibility regulations
PDFs and other documents
PDFs and other documents published before 23rd September 2018 are exempt from meeting the accessibility regulations if they are not essential to providing our services.
Maps and mapping services are exempt from meeting the accessibility regulations as long as they are not used for navigational purposes.
Videos published before 23rd September 2020 may not have accurate captions or a text transcript and do not have audio descriptions, therefore fail success criteria.
We do not plan to add captions to live video streams because live videos are exempt from meeting the accessibility regulations.
What to do if you can't access parts of this website
What we are doing to improve accessibility