Casey, senators press Justice Dept. for answers on web access for disabled people

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The federal government is supposed to file biennial reports on its web accessibility efforts. The last one was a decade ago.

Today is Friday, July 1, 2022. The 2022-23 budget year starts today. The Republican-controlled General Assembly and the Democratic Wolf administration have yet to agree on a new state budget. Talks are ongoing, and lawmakers currently are scheduled to work through the weekend.

Happy Fiscal New Year … or something. Here’s what else is going on today.

U.S. Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., is among a bipartisan group of lawmakers who want the Justice Department to explain why it’s been a decade since the agency last filed a mandatory, biennial report on efforts to make access to federal government websites easier for people living with disabilities.

“To have no reporting in a decade is just … unacceptable,” Casey, the chairperson of the Senate Aging Committeetold NPR on Thursday.

“It’s critical because of the barriers that people with disabilities face all the time, when it comes to the full access that they should, to have the resources of the federal government, and the resources, especially that are provided online,” he said.

About a quarter of all Americans (26 percent) live with a disability. And 40 percent of Americans aged 65 and older live with a disability, Casey’s office said in a statement.

But about 30 percent of the most popular federal websites are difficult for the disabled to use, according to an inventory by the independent Information Technology and Innovation Foundation.

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