The following is more of the self-advocacy for accessibility toolkit.
There are many accessibility resources that you may want to give the company. The first and most important is the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, or WCAG. WCAG is a list of guidelines that apply to any website or app; they are the generally accepted web standard and have been incorporated into the recent refresh of the Section 508 guidelines for federal sites. Here is the WCAG overview page from the World Wide Web Consortium site: https://w3.org/WAI/intro/wcag.
Also from the W3C are a series of videos, called Web Accessibility Perspectives, discussing how web accessibility benefits everyone, not just those with disabilities, https://w3.org/WAI/perspectives/. Another quality resource is Web Accessibility in Mind or WebAIM, which provides a number of articles and checklists relating to web accessibility as well as a tool for helping to determine some of a site’s accessibility problems, https://webaim.org/.
Another resource for information on accessibility issues is the Accessibility Switchboard. This site has a number of articles and guides targeted at business, education and government, https://accessibilityswitchboard.org/. Depending on the company, you may wish to share the recent announcement from the Department of Justice on web accessibility: https://justice.gov/opa/pr/justice-department-issues-web-accessibility-guidance-under-americans-disabilities-act.
Both Apple and Google have documentation and guidelines for developers to ensure that their apps are accessible. If you’re reporting an issue with an iOS app, you might consider including the Accessibility for Developers page on Apple’s site, https://developer.apple.com/accessibility/, or the similar accessibility page on the Android developers site, https://developer.android.com/guide/topics/ui/accessibility/index.html.
When reporting an accessibility issue, it’s common to get either a basic acknowledgement of the problem, or possibly no response at all. If the company was unaware of the need to make its site accessible, it’s possible you may get a canned response with unhelpful suggestions like resetting your browser, trying another one, etc. If you get a response like this, just reply and politely inform the company that these suggestions will not work and it needs to fix its site.
If you get an acknowledgement or no response, it’s fine to follow up in a week or two to inquire about the status of the issue. Polite persistence can sometimes yield better results than just one email. Either way patience will likely be required, and your best efforts may unfortunately not lead to any better accessibility. That does not mean that you shouldn’t try, as many companies are simply unaware and want to make things right. It is at this point that you might consider filing a complaint with a federal or state agency. A careful record of your detailed and respectful outreach will serve as helpful evidence.
The volume of information that you should include in an accessibility report may seem overwhelming, but the whole process boils down to a few simple steps. Report the software and access technology you’re using, what you’re trying to do, and what problem you’re experiencing in sufficient detail for the company to be able to act upon it. Adding in possible solutions, suggestions, and accessibility resources are optional extras, but they may help the company better understand what it needs to do and generally learn more about accessibility.
Submit Issue to National Federation of the Blind
After submitting an accessibility issue to the responsible organization, please take a few minutes to complete our Inaccessibility Tracker Form.