Today April 2 2023, at the Internet Society Board of Trustees Meeting No. 170, the board approved Resolution 2023-08 Policy on Accessibility for Persons with Disabilities.
The full text of the resolution reads:
Resolution 2023-8: Policy on Accessibility for Persons with Disabilities
WHEREAS, the World Health Organization estimates that over one billion people worldwide—comprising 15% of the global population—have disabilities, with 80% of those individuals living in developing countries;
WHEREAS, the board applauds ISOC’s progress in increasing accessibility for persons with disabilities (PWDs) through its Accessibility Standing Group and its predecessors and through the inclusion of people with disabilities in an internal accessibility working group to help develop ISOC’s accessibility framework on the principle of “nothing about us without us,” ensuring that the voices of those most directly impacted by these efforts are heard and their perspectives are valued;
WHEREAS, the board recognizes that persons with disabilities transcend economic, geographic, religious and gender binaries, and face challenges in accessing the Internet and believes that ISOC’s core mission of “Internet for everyone” cannot be fulfilled until the persons with disability community may also fully benefit from the Internet;
WHEREAS, the board believes that to achieve this goal, websites and applications must be built in such a way as to enable people with disabilities to access the same information as, to engage in the same interactions as, and to enjoy the same services offered to persons without disabilities, with the same privacy, independence, and ease of use.
RESOLVED, that the board fully supports the President and CEO in taking further steps to build a culture of accessibility within ISOC and work toward eliminating barriers to participation and engagement with ISOC’s content, events, services, processes, and practices for persons with disabilities;
FURTHER RESOLVED, that the President and CEO shall develop, or cause to be developed, a plan for ISOC to achieve and maintain at least AA level compliance with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (“WCAG”) for ISOC’s websites, applications, and content. To the extent in use, the legacy websites, applications and content would also be brought to the same standards as deemed reasonable, practical, and commensurate with the goal of benefiting the disability community. The President and CEO shall also be provided with such funds and resources as the President and CEO deems necessary to achieve such plan;
FURTHER RESOLVED, that the President and CEO shall formulate, or cause to be formulated, a comprehensive accessibility operational framework and fund allocation as the President/CEO deems appropriate and in furtherance of ISOC’s progress to increase accessibility for persons with disabilities;
FURTHER RESOLVED, that the President and CEO shall provide progress reports on compliance with WCAG AA standards and the accessibility framework to the board at least quarterly until such plan is implemented, after which the President and CEO will continue to provide reports on the accessibility work at ISOC on an annual basis until further notice from the board.