USA: 13-Year-Old Develops Device to Help People with Vision Disabilities
A 13-year-old Indian-origin student in the U.S. who developed a device to help people with vision disabilities navigate has been named one of America’s top 10 youth volunteers of 2015 and granted a $5,000 award. Raghav Ganesh, a seventh-grader from San Jose, California, was named one of America’s top 10 youth volunteers of 2015 by The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards. Ganesh started a quest to help people with vision disabilities by focusing his attention on the white canes used to detect obstacles in their path.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2015/05/16/13-year-old-develops-device-to-help-people-with-vision-disabilities/, May 18, 2015
USA: Ensuring access to jobs for people with disabilities
Americans with disabilities can face many unnecessary barriers to employment, both during the job application process and on the job. These barriers can prevent people with disabilities from finding and maintaining a job, receiving promotions and ultimately being economically self-sufficient and independent. During the job application process, applicants with disabilities may not want to disclose their disabilities to potential employers for a number of reasons, including the risk that the employer would refuse to hire them because of their disability. Sometimes employers stereotype people with disabilities or take adverse employment actions because of misinformation or ignorance about certain health conditions. Having to disclose a disability can deter people with disabilities even from applying for jobs out of fear of discrimination.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2015/05/17/ensuring-access-to-jobs-for-people-with-disabilities/, May 18, 2015
China: National Disabled Day Focuses on Children with Autism
This year’s “National Day for the Disabled” in China is focusing on autistic children. Five-year-old Rongrong is receiving rehabilitation therapy at a treatment center in Beijing. She is one of some 2-million children in China under the age of 14 that have been diagnosed with autism. The China Disabled Persons Federation estimates over 600-thousand pre-school children in China are autistic, and says that figure is increasing.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2015/05/18/national-disabled-day-focuses-on-children-with-autism/, May 18, 2015
USA: Microsoft Hires 13-Year-Old Boy for Braille Printer
A 13-year-old Indian-origin boy, who invented a low-cost portable Braille printer, is now working with technology giant Microsoft to integrate it with Windows. This move is to make it easily accessible to people with vision disabilities and Microsoft plans to launch it commercially in November. Shubham Banerjee, an eighth-grade student in Santa Clara, California was invited by Microsoft to showcase his Braigo 2.0 printer at a tech fair organized by the company. Our relationship with Microsoft will help Braigo achieve a seamless experience for a people with vision disabilities who wants to use a computer at home or at the office to print documents for offline reading, Banerjee said in Microsoft blog post, PTI reported.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2015/05/18/microsoft-hires-13-year-old-boy-for-braille-printer/, May 18, 2015
Singapore: NTU Hosts Global ICT Conference Highlighting Innovations that Advance Open Inclusive Development
An assistive smart technology that helps seniors cope with degenerative changes and independent living by simply pointing a device or smartphone camera at an object to send a text message or activate a phone call. A haze analytics tool that provides users with the latest health advisories during haze episodes, and that can be integrated with wearable devices such as smart watches and smart bands to objectively measure a user’s heart rate and other health parameters.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2015/05/18/ntu-hosts-global-ict-conference-highlighting-innovations-that-advance-open-inclusive-development/, May 18, 2015
Apple VoiceOver Accessibility Receives Award from American Foundation for the Blind
The American Foundation for the Blind announced Apple among its four honorees to receive a Helen Keller Achievement Award later this June, recognizing the company's contribution to accessibility with VoiceOver.
From http://appleinsider.com/articles/15/05/06/apple-voiceover-accessibility-receives-award-from-american-foundation-for-the-blind, May 14, 2015
Abu Dhabi Police Introduce Initiative to Support Staff Members with Disabilities
The Abu Dhabi Police, represented by the Selection and Recruitment Department, launched the “Hand in Hand” initiative to support staff members with disabilities at the Police General Headquarters. The one-year initiative will be launched in cooperation with the Ministry of Interior’s Centers for Rehabilitation and Employment of people with disabilities.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2015/05/14/abu-dhabi-police-introduce-initiative-to-support-staff-members-with-disabilities/, May 14, 2015
USA: Hawaii Makes Cinema Access Compulsory
The US state of Hawaii has brought in state legislation to mandate the provision of captions and audio description (described as “descriptive narration” in the Bill) in all cinemas where the cinema operator has more than two locations (that is three or more separate cinemas or cinema complexes).
From http://www.mediaaccess.org.au/latest_news/news/hawaii-makes-cinema-access-compulsory, May 12, 2015
Australia: Municipal Association of Victoria Unlocks Power of Digital Accessibility
The peak body representing local councils in the Australian state of Victoria partners with Media Access Australia to deliver upskilling, training and best practice on digital accessibility enabling its members to boost inclusion and community engagement. One particularly pressing compliance issue for the MAV’s members, and an area in which a clear skill and knowledge gap existed, is the councils’ ability to meet the legislative requirements of the Disability Discrimination Act. The Australian Human Rights Commission, which enforces the act, has advised that all websites should be compliant to Level AA of the global web accessibility standard, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0.
From http://www.mediaaccess.org.au/latest_news/professional-services/case-study-municipal-association-of-victoria-unlocks-power-of-digital-accessibility, May 12, 2015
Norway: Lessons from Skandia Bank's Accessibility Journey
Norwegian bank Skandiabanken’s Snorre Kim discusses why a major national bank decided to put digital accessibility at the front and centre of its recent website redesign and move to a new banking platform.
From http://www.mediaaccess.org.au/latest_news/news/lessons-from-skandia-bank%E2%80%99s-accessibility-journey, May 12, 2015