Website Accessibility


Fairfax County is committed to nondiscrimination on the basis of disability in all county programs, services and activities. Public Website content will be made accessible as much as possible to users with physical or cognitive disabilities. In an effort to improve accessibility, the county Website utilizes various features like text sizing to increase font size; use of descriptive alternative text or 'alt tags' on images to aid users who listen to content on the site using a screen reader; text only version of the Website; and a 'skip to' link which allows users to bypass the header and go directly to the main content of the page. Content such as podcasts include a text-only version so users can still access the information regardless of format.

The county Web technical standards include guidelines for accessibility and the county Web Accessibility Standards include steps which all developers and content contributors are required to follow when developing and maintaining Web pages. The Department of Information Technology, along with the Office of Public Affairs and with input from Disability Services Board, works to ensure that all county departments and agencies comply with these standards by providing technical assistance and accessibility awareness to their staff.

Departments and agencies of the county provide alternative formatted documents of information from the Website upon request. Contact information is provided consistently throughout the site at the bottom of each page along with links to information about ADA Accessibility and Website Accessibility.

There are numerous Portable Document Format (PDF) documents, forms and brochures on the Fairfax County Website to help users download and print easily. Many of the PDFs on this site were created in Adobe Acrobat. To navigate through text-only PDF files using a screen reader, such as JAWS, you will need at least Version 7.0 PDF reader. You can download a free copy of the Adobe Reader from Adobe.

Standards

We endeavor to make our site accessible to a variety of users with differing needs, using various technologies. This site uses the following standards for content delivery and accessibility:

  • Pages are coded in XHTML 1.0 Transitional.

  • Styles are formatted using the Cascading Style Sheets 2 (CSS2) specification (and can be disabled).

  • All pages are tested for compliance with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act by passing through the county's automated compliance checking tool.

  • All pages comply with priority one checkpoints of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, and many comply with priority one and two.

  • Manual usability testing is conducted periodically to ensure the pages are accessible to individuals with disabilities.

  • Javascript and cookies are used only when necessary.

  • Microsoft Word (or a compatible application, like the Internet Explorer browser) is required for certain forms and documents in DOC format.

Recent versions of popular web browsers will tend to display our pages more accurately, as these newer browsers comply with the standards defined in the HTML 4.01 and CSS2 specifications.

Plugins

The Adobe Acrobat plugin is required for certain forms and documents presented in PDF format. It can be downloaded at: http://get.adobe.com/reader/.

Web Accessibility Tips

There are many ways, using your browser, to customize your viewing experience of our site. One of the most useful changes you can make for visual accessibility is to modify the colors, font types, and font sizes as fits your needs.

Internet Explorer 7 & Internet Explorer 8

IE Internet Options window

To change fonts or colors, go the of any Internet Explorer page,click on Tools, scroll down and click on Internet Options. Near the bottom right corner of this window, click on Accessibility to select options which will cause the browser to ignore the fonts and colors on web pages.
To select colors or fonts you would like to use instead, click on Colors and Fonts at the bottom of the Internet Options window.


Internet Explorer 8 Advanced Options window

To change other accessibility features,
click the Advanced tab of Internet Options window.


Firefox

Firefox Options window

To change colors or fonts, go to the top of any Firefox page, click Tools, scroll down and click on Options. In Options, open the Content tab.


Firefox Options Content window

To change other accessibility features such as scrolling, go to the top of any Firefox page, click Tools, scroll down and click on Options. In Options, open the Advanced tab.


Opera

Opera Preferences window

In Opera both colors and fonts can be changed on the same screen.
At the top of any Opera page, click the Tools and scroll down and click on Preferences. In Preferences, click the Web Pages tab.

Safari




Safari Advanced window

In Safari the default text size can be changed.
Go to the top right of any Safari page, click View and scroll down and click on Preferences.

Chrome

Chrome Options window

In Chrome the default text size can be changed.
Go to the top right of any Chrome page, click Wrench Tool Icon and scroll down and click on Options.



Contact Fairfax County: Phone, Email or Twitter | Main Address: 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, VA 22035
Technical Questions: Web Administrator

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