Reigate and Banstead accessible documents Policy
This accessibility statement applies to documents published on the Reigate & Banstead Borough Council website.
We publish documents in a range of formats, including PDF (portable document format), Word, Excel, CSV (comma-separated values) and PowerPoint.
We want as many people as possible to be able to use our documents. When we produce a new document on our website where possible we use HTML (hyper-text mark-up language) format (made into a webpage) instead of a PDF, Word, Excel, or CSV file.
If a document has to be created we:
- include alternative (Alt) text for images and pictures
- avoid using tables, except when we’re presenting data
- use plain English that is understandable by all
Reading level for our webpages: the webpage you view should be easy to understand
All content on the Reigate & Banstead Borough Council website should be clear and easy to be understood by all residents and users of the website. We aim to write and publish for the reading age of a 9 years old as per the, writing well for the web: reading skills - GOV.UK guidance. Therefore, allowing our information and services to be quick and easy to read at all levels. This will benefit all users, ensuring that our website can be used by a wide range of customers and service users.
The exception to publsihing all pages, as webpages in place of documents, also to a specific reading age to allow accessibility would be:
- in the case of the publication of statutory information that is required by law to be published in a specific way. For example, an emergency planning document in which information must be presented verbatim to the orginal document
Documents published before 23 September 2018
PDFs, non-compliance with the accessibility regulations and other documents
Many of our PDFs and Office documents published before 23 September 2018 do not meet accessibility standards. For example, they may not be structured so they're accessible to a screen reader. This does not meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.2 (name, role value) and WCAG 2.4.2 (page, titled). We are currently identifying documents which do not meet these standards. This includes documents on our democracy sub-domain. We are currently working on a solution for this and expect to update this statement in September 2022. Any new PDFs or Word documents we publish on the main website should meet accessibility standards.
Content that’s not within the scope of the accessibility regulations
Non-HTML documents published before September 2018 do not require us to fix PDFs or other documents - GOV.UK - unless users need them to use a service.
We will ensure that any new PDFs or Word documents we publish on our main site meet accessibility standards.
Anyone who has difficulty accessing any of our documents can ask for an alternative format, or individual support. Please contact us requesting the acccessibility team:
What we’re doing to improve accessibility
We are training our staff in accessibility and how to create accessible documents. We are updating documents which are essential to providing our services to make sure they are fully accessible.