Georgia Tech Research Institute

Which states have adopted Section 508 or similar accessibility initiatives?

As of January 2006, most activities underway to improve IT accessibility at a state level focused on improving website accessibility. Seventeen states had passed initiatives adopting standards as defined in Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended; seven states had passed initiatives adopting the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), and nine had passed initiatives adopting a hybrid of Section 508 and WCAG. Four states developed their own state standards. The identified differences in approaches among the states to full or partial adoption of Section 508 standards emphasize the need for increased state-federal coordination.

Overall, it is clear that the states are committed to improving access to E&IT, and they are moving forward on a voluntary basis. The lack of broad-based adoption of similar laws and policies, however, may point more to a recognition that states operate differently and that they each deals with a variety of unique issues (size, authority, resources, etc.).