Accessibility statement for West Suffolk Council websites

Accessibility statement for

This accessibility statement applies to content published on the domain.

This website is run by West Suffolk Council. It is designed to be used by as many people as possible. For example, that means you should be able to:

  • navigate most of the website using just a keyboard
  • navigate most of the website using speech recognition software
  • listen to most of the website using a screen reader.

We are always working to make the website text as simple as possible to understand.

In accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018, we regularly monitor the accessibility standards of our website. To do this, we use a tool called Siteimprove which monitors and tests the website and sends reports to us.

AbilityNet has advice on making your device easier to use if you have a disability.

How accessible this website is

We know some parts of this website are not fully accessible:

  • Some pages scroll in two dimensions on small screens
  • you cannot modify the line height or spacing of text
  • Some PDFs and other documents are not fully accessible:
    • most older PDF documents are not fully accessible to screen reader software
    • occasionally we add documents produced by external organisations which we cannot always make accessible
    • on rare occasions, due to tight deadlines or to meet statutory requirements, we may sometimes upload documents which are not fully accessible. We aim to upload accessible versions as soon as we can, and if asked will provide an accessible version
    • there is no legal requirement to make documents produced before September 2018 accessible. As many of these are historical it is not possible to make them all fully accessible.

Feedback and contact information

If you are having issues accessing information on this website or need it in a different format like accessible PDF or large print:

In your message, include:

  • the web address (URL) of the content
  • your email address and name
  • the format you need - for example, plain text, braille, BSL, large print or audio CD

We’ll consider your request and get back to you as soon as possible.

Reporting accessibility problems with this website

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of this our websites.

If you find any problems that aren’t listed on this page or think we’re not meeting accessibility requirements, email: Please include:

  • ‘Website accessibility’ in the subject line
  • the web address (URL) of the page with the issue
  • details of the issue.

Enforcement procedure

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is responsible for enforcing the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018 (the ‘accessibility regulations’).

If you’re not happy with how we respond to your complaint, contact the Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS).

Contacting us by phone or visiting us in person

Find out how to contact us.

Technical information about this website’s accessibility

West Suffolk Council is committed to making its website accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.

Compliance status

This website is not fully compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.2 AA standard, due to the non-compliances and exemptions listed below.

Non accessible content

When last tested on 17 May 2024, the accessibility report showed that the website was 89.2% compliant with the A, AA, AAA standards, WAI-ARiA authoring practices and Accessbility best practices.

Non compliance with the accessibility regulations

  • Colour contrast does not meet minimum requirement - there is not quite enough contract between the text and background colour for some links, making it hard to read the information. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.2 success criterion 1.4.3 Contrast (Minimum). We plan to improve colour contrast by December 2024.
  • Hidden element has focusable content. this affects the radio buttons in teh galleries. In this case, the element has been removed from the reading order, but not from the focus order — which could result in a confusing experience for screen-reader users. This fails WCAG 2.2 A Criterion 1.3.1: Info and Relationships and WCAG 2.2 Criterion 4.1.2: Name, Role, Value
  • Form field missing a label - Unclear labels make form-filling harder for everyone. This doesn't meet WCAG 2.2 WCAG 2.2 Criterion 4.1.2: Name, Role, Value
  • Links are not clearly identifyable - links in the text are a different colour but are not underlined.
  • Container element is empty in the radio buttons on the banners. Some roles are designed to contain other roles. This element has this type of role, but it doesn't contain any required-owned elements. This fails WCAG 2.2 WAI-ARIA 1.1: 5.2.5 Required Owned Elements
  • Role not inside the required context - a few pages have elements which have a role that only makes sense in the context of another role. This fails WCAG 2.2 A criterion ARIA 1.1: 5.2.6 Required Context Role
  • Role with implied hidden content has keyboard focus. Some elements have a role that implies their internal structure should be hidden from assistive technologies. In other words, their sub-elements have a presentational role. This fails WCAG 2.2 Criterion 4.1.2: Name, Role, Value
  • Inline frame missing a text alternative. This affects one event page. Every inline frame (iframe) should have a text alternative that summarises its content or purpose. This fails WCAG 2.2 Criterion 4.1.2: Name, Role, Value.

We plan to fix all of these issues by December 2024.

Other accessibility issues

  • Colour contrast does not meet enhanced requirement. The colour for some links does not have enough contrast with the background. This fails WCAG 2.2 AAA Criterion 1.4.6 Contrast (Enhanced)
  • Interactive element does not meet enhanced size. some interactive elements, like buttons or links, are not at least 44 by 44 pixels, so they can easily be clicked or tapped by all users. This fails WCAG 2.2 AAA Criterion 2.5.5: Target Size Enhanced
  • Text not included in an ARIA landmark. Not all perceivable text content is included in an ARIA landmark. This does not meet WAI-ARIA authoring practices WCAG 2.2 Technique ARIA11: Using ARIA landmarks to identify regions of a page, and WCAG 2.2 Technique ARIA20: Using the region role to identify a region of the page
  • Content missing after heading. Some headings are not formatted correctly when pulling information about events through for the Spectrix system so there is a heading 2 followed by another heading 2, withouh any text in between. Content should appear as expected including between headings of the same level and after the last section or page heading. If content is missing then the user does not know if the information is hidden, or if a heading level was applied incorrectly. This does not meet Accessibility best practices.

PDFs and other documents

Some of our PDFs and Word documents are essential to providing our services, but may not be structured so they’re accessible to a screen reader. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.2 (Name, role value).

By December 2024, we plan to either fix these or replace them with accessible HTML pages. Any new PDFs or Word documents we publish should meet accessibility standards.

Content that’s not within the scope of the accessibility regulations

PDFs and other documents

The accessibility regulations don’t require us to fix PDFs or other documents published before 23 September 2018 if they’re not essential to providing our services.

We are working to make sure that any new PDFs or other documents we publish will meet accessibility standards.

We work with our suppliers, contractors, and partners to make sure their systems and documentation adhere to the latest Government guidance on accessibility where they are supplying us with content. Where possible this is written into contracts and is part of our procurement procedures.

However, we cannot always guarantee that documents produced by external organisations and members of the public which are published on our website, are always fully accessible. We have to host a considerable number of documents in relation to planning applications, the local plan and neighbourhood plans, and it is not always possible to get all the different organisations to adhere to our accessibility requirements.

If this is the case and you need a document in an accessible format, please contact us.

Live video

We don’t plan to add captions to live video streams because live video is exempt from meeting the accessibility regulations.

What we’re doing to improve accessibility

We are continually working to improve accessibility. We regularly receive reports form SiteImprove, the automated system we use to check accessibility, quality assurance and search engine optimisation (SEO) and look to resolve issues on a weekly basis. We also respond to any issues identified by visitors to the websites and regularly review pages.

We work with our third party suppliers to make sure their systems are as accessible as possible, and to resolve issues as quickly as possible.

Preparation of this accessibility statement

This statement was prepared on 20 September 2019. It was last reviewed on 17 May 2024.

This website was last tested on 17 May 2024.

The test was carried out internally by West Suffolk Council, using Siteimprove for automated testing. The regular accessibility report run by Siteimprove shows that the site 94.1% compliant with the A standard, 89.8% compliant with AA standard, and 66.9% compliant with AAA standard (which is above the legal requirement). It also includes 84.1% compliant with WAI-ARIA Authoring practices, and 87.4% compliant with Accessibility best practices, which bring the overall rating down to 89.2%. We continue to review the website and review any issues as soon as we can when a warning appears.

Read the full SiteImprove accessibility report – Whats on West suffolk website 19 May 2024

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17 May 2024.

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