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Global Accessibility Awareness Day at the City of Seattle

On Thursday, May 16, 2024, the City of Seattle celebrated Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) for the third year with a day of learning for City employees. Seattle IT’s Digital Engagement Team was instrumental in planning and executing this virtual event in collaboration with the ADA Title II Compliance Program, Customer Service, and Department of Neighborhoods Communications teams.

As public servants, we’re responsible for making our digital experiences accessible to everyone in our community, including those with disabilities. In addition, the United States Department of Justice recently passed a ruling that strengthens the City’s policy for all web applications and web content to comply with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 at the AA conformance level. That’s why the theme for this year’s Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) event is “Digital Accessibility Compliance: It Starts with You.”

The City of Seattle’s GAAD Planning Team prepared eight different sessions for a variety of audiences within our workforce, including legal requirements, stories of successes within City departments, and interviews with members of the disability community about their personal experiences. The event’s sessions provided actionable skills for employees to apply to their jobs and increase accessibility of City content and services, including plain language, alt-text, social media, email, documents, and presentations. All virtual sessions were recorded and are available on the City’s intranet for future viewing. We’re pleased with the success of our third annual event.

By the Numbers

  • 6 hours of learning
  • 8 individual sessions providing actionable skills
  • 7 Planning Team members representing 3 City departments
  • 3 external speakers
  • 9 staff speakers
  • 12 additional Digital Engagement staff for event support
  • 159 unique attendees representing 85 teams across the City
  • 2.5 hours average attendance