Access Cork has made every effort to ensure that the design of this website conforms to web standards for both usability and accessibility. Our aim is to provide an equivalence of access to the information on this website for all our users.
We have followed the W3C's WAI (Web Accessibility Initiative) guidelines in the creation of this website and we have used the latest technologies available to structure the website. W3C is the governing authority on web development standards and practices.
The website uses XHTML code to provide document structure and CSS (Cascading Stylesheets) to provide document formatting. By following guidelines set down by the W3C we are trying to make sure that all the information on our web site is available to everybody: not just the text, but the information contained in the images and other media. Using these technologies also allows us to provide a website that loads faster, and displays in more devices. The website template set contains valid XHTML and CSS code and conforms to the Web Accessibility Initiative's AAA guidelines. In addition, the website template set has been Bobby Tested and has passed all Priority 2 Guidelines.
If you have a problem accessing any information on the site, please contact us and we will endeavour to provide the information in an appropriate format.
Browsealoud...Making Websites Talk
Browsealoud is a computer program that reads aloud all website content including PDF and MS Word documents. As you move the cursor over words, they are spoken aloud. Browsealoud is free to the end user. Browsealoud makes using the Internet easier for people who have:
Browsealoud is a Windows browser plug-in designed for use with Internet Explorer 4 upwards or Netscape Navigator. If you install the Browsealoud plugin onto your PC, you can have the web pages on the Cork City Council website read back to you. To avail of this service, the Browsealoud plugin is available for download to your browser from http://www.browsealoud.com/.
We have ensured that the website template set displays on all current browsers including Internet Explorer 6, Opera 7, Firefox 1 and Mozilla/Netscape 7. If you do not have one of these, we recommend you upgrade as these browsers support web standards which in turn support the provision of fully functional web services for all users.
All images used on the site contain descriptive alt text. In addition, images have been moved into the background where possible.
Where tables are used, we endeavour to ensure that they are written using semantic markup which includes properly labelled header cells to allow screen readers to render the data intelligently. We also endeavour to only use tables in page content where there is a real need for them, in the case of tabular data, for example.
We endeavour to ensure that link text is written to make sense out of context. We have tried to avoid the use of the words 'click here' for link text.
If you find that the text on this site is too small, you can change it easily by locating the built in text re-sizing function which is found to the top right of all pages. You can also increase the text size within your browser:
We have provided a low vision version for users who may be visually impaired. This version provides an equivalence of access – the low vision version contains exactly the same information as the rest of the website, but it is presented in an easier to read fashion.
We have built a number of useful navigation aids into the website to benefit all of our users:
We have specified a tabbing order for the menu items on the website. This is useful for users who don't use a mouse to get around the page. When each page loads, it is possible to use the Tab key to access the search feature and all the main navigation buttons in a sequential fashion.
Access keys are used on this site to support users who do not necessarily navigate using a mouse or other pointing device. The way you access the keys depends on the what system you are using. For instance, on machines running Internet Explorer on Windows, press the "alt" key in addition to the required access key and then hit the "return" key. On Firefox/Windows configurations use shift+alt+required access key. On Apple systems, press the "cmd" key in addition to the required access key and then hit the "return" key.
Access keys on the Access Cork website are as follows:
A function is provided for users of adaptive devices to allow them to skip through the main navigation on each page if they do wish. Screen readers will read out each and every menu option exhaustively on each page, so this function allows a user to go directly to the page content if they wish.
Breadcrumbing is used on the website to add extra navigation information and to help users locate themselves within the website.