Kansas State Web Accessibility Laws

December 7, 2015 BY EMILY GRIFFIN
Updated: October 23, 2023

Kansas boasts one of the oldest state web accessibility policies in the United States. Back in 2000, the Kansas Information Technology Executive Council (ITEC) crafted an official, state-wide standard for web design that removes barriers for users with sensory or fine motor disabilities. It was since revised in 2006 and 2009.

The State of Kansas Web Accessibility Requirements’ official purpose is:

To establish a State of Kansas policy regarding accessibility requirements for all State of Kansas internet, intranet, and extranet websites, web services, and web applications, including those that are developed internally, developed via contract, provided by third parties on behalf of state Entities, or purchased products.

The policy explicitly defines which organizations need to follow state standards, what needs to be done to comply, and who is responsible for making websites accessible (“heads of entities” are ultimately liable).

All state websites, software, and applications must comply with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act and WCAG 2.0 level AA guidelines. Kansas state websites must comply with policy updates within 18 months after they are issued.

No new websites can be published that are not Section 508 and WCAG AA compliant. The only exception would be for situations where accommodation would qualify as an “undue burden.” The policy outlines how to apply for this status on a case-by-case basis.

The policy covers websites and digital services from all state government departments and office, but it also extends to education. Kansas State University responded to the policy with a school-wide accessibility memorandum to urge immediate compliance. It reiterates that K-State must follow the new state rules for inclusive web design, and it provides specific directions for compliance and links to resources for more info.

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