The Omeka team is committed to designing software accessible to all possible users. To demonstrate this commitment, the team has recently published an accessibility statement.
Together with the statement, we completed and now provide a Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT) (pdf link) for the core Omeka software and its bundled plugins and themes. Some academic, cultural, and government institutions require VPATs before they can commit to using a software product like Omeka. The form was created by the Information Technology Industry Council to assess the level of accessibility as defined in Section 508 of the Americans with Disabilities Act, for software, hardware, and other technology-based services. Standard questions simplify the process of reviewing the level of accessibility for a platform or application.
As of Omeka 2.3, the admin dashboard, and every theme developed by the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media (RRCHNM), include Accessible Rich Internet Application (ARIA) landmarks and skip navigation links. The ARIA landmarks allow screen reading technology used by visually impaired individuals to identify areas of the screen, such as the main menu, navigation, or content area. Skip navigation links help users with screen reading technology or those using a keyboard to navigate to go directly from the start of the page to the main content – try loading your admin dashboard and using the tab key to navigate the page to see how it works.
The responsibility for launching a 508-compliant Omeka website resides with you. Omeka is free, open-source software, and we cannot guarantee the same level of accessibility stated in the VPAT once a site has been customized by individual developers and designers. The Omeka team remains committed to creating accessible resources and we encourage those who develop for Omeka to do the same.
We are interested in your feedback, please share your thoughts about this accessibility statement with us so that we can continue to improve the statement and the software.