Question: I’m new to Section 508 compliance- how does “remediation” change our documents?

This is a common question from our new clients. Often all they know about Section 508 is that there is a line-item in their deliverables contract stating that they must provide a “Section 508 compliant” PDF to complete the job.  The “remediated” document returned from the compliance service looks exactly like the document sent to them. How do we know we have a compliant document.

First off, there is NO certificate issued by any government agency certifying compliance. Your  proof of compliance is documentation that accompanies your accessible PDF.

Luckily, you have found a reputable document remediation service, Accessibility In Mind, and you can rest easy.  When we complete any remediation we provide our clients with documentation of the work performed, which includes accessibility reports from one or more sources:

  • Acrobat 11 full accessibility report: This is the first stop, a report that shows compliance in 32 of 32 categories, and proves technical compliance.
  • PAC Accessibility Check: The PAC program provides a fast way to test the accessibility of PDF files. PAC supports both experts as well as end users conducting accessibility evaluations, and is based on the Matterhorn Protocol. Matterhorn was designed to foster adoption of PDF/UA by providing a set of 31 Checkpoints and 136 Failure Conditions that help software developers exchange detailed information on PDF/UA conformance and create software to make it easier for document authors to create fully accessible PDF files and forms.
  • CommonLook by NetCentric Section 508 Reports: Common Look is considered the “gold standard” for accessibility reporting, and is recommended by Health & Human Services (HHS) and is generally accepted for all government contracts.

Additionally, all AIM documents are spot-checked using JAWS, the most popular screenreader developed for computer users whose vision loss prevents them from seeing screen content or navigating with a mouse. (The read-aloud feature in Adobe Reader and Acrobat is NOT a substitute for a dedicated reader.)

All AIM-remediated documents passing CommonLook accessibility checks meet HHS specifications and are guaranteed compliant with Section 508.

Oct, 19, 2015

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