Accessibility matters more than ever during COVID-19 Crisis
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Today is Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD), the annual celebration of digital access and inclusion for people with disabilities. This year on GAAD, connection is more important than ever, and we are continuing to work to ensure our products are accessible.
Our news and editorial teams are helping our customers stay connected and informed with relevant content and science-based information. Yahoo News launched the COVID19 hub, ensuring the site meets web content accessibility guidelines so everyone can access this important information. We continue to elevate underrepresented perspectives, with compelling stories such as a recent one about a deaf man in Arizona who is advocating for more inclusive crisis response. We also launched Yahoo Life, a one-stop source of information on mental health and emotional wellness to provide our readers with more resources during this critical time.
Father helps his son with homework, they sit next to each other looking at a tablet.
We are looking out for the well-being of our own employees, and supporting our employees with disabilities. When the West Valley City, UT call center closed, Sylvia Bernert who is legally blind, transitioned to work remotely from home. Listen to Sylvia’s story here. Andrew Owen, an autistic employee who works in critical engineering operations also shared his experience transitioning to work from home to be a role model for other employees. Check out Andrew’s story here.
Beyond our own products and employee community, we’re continuing to advance access and inclusion in the industry and society.
The Disability Collection partnership with the National Disability Leadership Alliance and Getty Images reaches a two year milestone with over 2,500 stock images that authentically portray people with disabilities in everyday life. Over 5,600 businesses have downloaded the images, and we’ve awarded $40,000 in prizes to underrepresented photographers. On June 4 we will be hosting “Behind the lens” a virtual event highlighting photographers who are documenting disability during this time of crisis.
Teach Access, an initiative to close the accessibility skills gap has awarded $100,000 in faculty Curriculum Development Grants, and is currently accepting applications for an additional $25,000 in grant funding through June 1.
The second annual XR Access Symposium will take place virtually on July 20 in partnership with Cornell Tech, bringing together researchers, technologists, and the disability community to lead the way toward making Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), and 360 video accessible.
In this unprecedented time, we remain proud to be part of the Accessibility community across the tech sector, continuously working for equal access and inclusion. So everyone can stay connected, especially now.
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