Microsoft in a ceremony hosted by FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, received a Chairman’s Awards for Advancement in Accessibility in recognition of the company’s work in creating a set of Accessibility Tools and Training Resources, announced Laura Ruby, Director, Trustworthy Computing – Accessibility Policy & Standards, Microsoft.
In a October 28 blog post, Ruby noted “The awards were presented for the development of individual mainstream or assistive technologies introduced into the marketplace, the development of standards, or the implementation of best practices that foster accessibility.”
“The Chairman’s Awards for Advancement in Accessibility were designed to acknowledge the efforts of individuals, organizations, academics, companies and government agencies to make communication tools easier to use and more accessible to people with disabilities, as well as to encourage technological innovation and accessibility, in communication-related areas,” noted Ruby.
“Microsoft Accessibility Tools & Training Resources is a free set of extensive training guides and other resources for developing accessible software, equipment and websites.”
“Microsoft initially developed the online tools and training courses to increase accessibility awareness and expertise among its own developer groups. In response to growing customer demand for accessibility guidance, however, Microsoft decided to make the resources available, free of charge, to corporations, governments and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) around the world that want to make technology more accessible,” Ruby added.
Ruby said, “The timing of the a ceremony was very fitting because October is Disability Employment Awareness Month, and also marks the first anniversary of the Twenty-First Communications and Video Programming Accessibility Act (CVAA).”
Adding, she said, “The awards program, coordinated by the FCC’s Accessibility and Innovation Initiative that was announced in the National Broadband Plan, and launched at the Commission’s ADA 20th Anniversary Celebration on July 19, 2010, recognizes outstanding private and public sector ventures that advance accessibility for people with disabilities.”