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This website is run by Essex County Council. We want as many people as possible to be able to use this website. For example, that means you should be able to:

  • change colours, contrast levels and fonts
  • zoom in up to 300% without the text spilling off the screen
  • navigate most of the website using just a keyboard
  • navigate most of the website using speech recognition software
  • listen to most of the website using a screen reader (including the most recent versions of JAWS, NVDA and VoiceOver)

We’ve also made the website text as simple as possible to understand.

AbilityNet has advice on making your device easier to use if you have a disability.

How accessible this website is

We know some parts of this website are not fully accessible:

  • Some elements do not meet the minimum contrast ratio
  • some elements have no focus styles meaning they are not highlighted for keyboard only users
  • not all content is included in landmarks or the correct landmarks making it difficult for users of assistive technologies to navigate between sections on the page
  • some link text is generic and not descriptive of the destination
  • Some images do not have the correct alternative text
  • Page titles are not always descriptive
  • Some content is repeated to screen readers
  • Some items are created using the wrong HTML elements

Feedback and contact information

If you need information on this website in a different format like accessible PDF, large print, easy read, audio recording or braille:

We’ll consider your request and get back to you in 20 days.

If you cannot view the map on our ‘contact us’ page, call or email us  for directions.

Reporting accessibility problems with this website

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of this website. If you find any problems not listed on this page or think we’re not meeting accessibility requirements, contact:

Enforcement procedure

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is responsible for enforcing the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018 (the ‘accessibility regulations’). If you’re not happy with how we respond to your complaint, contact the Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS).

Technical information about this website’s accessibility

Essex County Council is committed to making its website accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.

Compliance status

This website is partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.1 AA standard, due to the non-compliances listed below.

Non-accessible content

The content listed below is non-accessible for the following reasons.

Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations

Some items do not meet the minimum requirements for contrast making it difficult for users with visual impairments to see. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.4.3 (Contrast (Minimum))

We plan to improve all contrast ratios by 1st December 2021.

The location of the keyboard is not visually obvious, so keyboard only users will not know where they are on a webpage. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 2.4.7 (Focus Visible).

We plan to add focus styles to all interactive elements by  1st December 2021.

There are some parts of this website that are not included in landmarks, so users of assistive technologies may find it difficult to navigate through the website. This fails WAG 2.1 success criterion 1.3.1 (Info and relationships)

We plan to add all landmarks by 1st December 2021.

There are some links with ambiguous text. Users may not be able to identify where the link takes them. This fails success criterion 2.4.4 (Link purpose (In Context))

We plan to correct all link text by  1st December 2021.

Some images have no alt text, making it impossible for users who rely on screen readers to understand the purpose of the image. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion (Non-text content)

We plan to add the correct alt text to all images by 1st December 2021.  And ensure when new content is added the correct alt text is in place.

Some page titles are not as descriptive as they could be meaning users of screen readers may not be sure they are on the right page. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 2.4.2 (Page titled)

We plan to have accurate and descriptive page titles on all pages by 1st December 2021.

Some pages have content that uses the wrong HTML element meaning screen reader users might be confused by the contents purpose. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.3.1 (info and Relationships)

We plan to change the incorrect element to the correct mark-up by 1st December 2021.  All new content added will be added using the correct mark-up.

Content that’s not within the scope of the accessibility regulations

PDFs and other documents

Most of our older PDFs and downloadable documents do not meet accessibility standards. However, we plan to ensure that moving forward all PDFs meet WCAG 2.1 Accessibility standards.

The accessibility regulations do not require us to fix PDFs or other documents published before 23 September 2018 if they’re not essential to providing our services.

For documents that are essential to providing our services, such as: -

  • Information on how users can access our service
  • Forms published in word documents and PDFs

we are developing a strategy to ensure that they are made accessible.

The strategy prioritizes PDFs that are opened/used regularly or have information that is a statutory requirement. We are also developing training and guidance to help all document creators develop accessible documents.

Our plans are to ensure that all essential PDFs meet accessibility regulations by 1st December 2021.

Live Video

We do not plan to add captions to live video streams because live video is exempt from meeting the accessibility regulations.

Preparation of this accessibility statement

This statement was prepared on 23rd September 2020. It was last reviewed on 1st June 2021.

This website was last tested on 17/08/2020. The test was carried out by Essex County Council.