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About PWAG


What is Web Accessibility?

“Web accessibility” simply means making your web site accessible to anyone using the Internet.

These users may or may not have physical disabilities. They might not see the difference between the colors green and orange. They cannot read small texts. They cannot hear the sounds in your site. Their computers still belong to the “Medieval Ages” of the nineteen nineties. Their Internet connection is still 56kbps. They might have difficulty in using the mouse or just plain keyboard lovers. They are in a hurry and want to go directly to the juicy stuff in your web site.

Whoever these persons are and whatever their needs are; we must satisfy them so that they can fully access information from our web sites. We must not put any barriers or restrictions on our web site in order for these persons to experience their viewing pleasure.


About Philippine Web Accessibility Group

After accepting the mandate of establishing the web accessibility adhoc group from the government and fresh from the "Webmasters Interface Workshop" held at Cebu City in May of 2006, a team of web designers formed a group and held its first informal meeting at the conference hall of the National Council on Disability Affairs in August 11, 2006. The group agreed to adopt the name Philippine Web Accessibility Group or PWAG.

As a government supervised group through the Department of Social Welfare and Development-National Council on Disability Affairs (DSWD-NCDA) and the National Computer Center-Commission on Information and Communications Technology (NCC-CICT), PWAG is also tasked to oversee and implement relevant programs on accessible ICT in the Philippines.

PWAG Infographics

Birth of PWAG from 2004 Luzon, 2005 Visayas, 2006 Mindanao and Cebu conference.
Birth of PWAG from 2004 Luzon, 2005 Visayas, 2006 Mindanao and Cebu conference.

As a member of ICT Subcommittee, NCDA and NCC passed Board Resolution 13 and Joint Circular 1
As a member of ICT Subcommittee, NCDA and NCC passed Board Resolution 13 and Joint Circular 1

Objectives

During the meeting held in October 11, 2006, the PWAG core group agreed and finalized the main objectives in forming the organization. These are:

  1. To educate and promote to the general public about the benefits of including accessibility on their websites by providing information and assistance through trainings, workshops, seminars, e-groups and other forums as well as devise other training and e-learning materials;*
  2. To adopt the Manila Accessible Information and Communications Technology Design Recommendations as the basic web accessibility requirement in the Philippines;
  3. To formulate and recommend web accessibility guidelines and standards to be used in the Philippines;**
  4. To receive membership fees, accept donations, endowments, grants, legacies and instruments/devices conformable with existing applicable statutes;**
  5. To encourage participation and open up opportunities for persons with disabilities through web accessibility;
  6. To work with government and other non-government organizations in lobbying for inclusion of web accessibility in pending laws on information and communications technology;*
  7. To collaborate with international groups in promoting and learning new developments and technologies on web accessibility.*

Notes:

* – Revised April 2007
   ** – Latest addition based on the recommendations of the Securities and Exchange Commission


PWAG Founding Members and Partners

PWAG List of Validator-Members
PWAG List of Validator-Members

The core members and administrators of the group were selected by NCDA from among those web designers who participated in the first ICT workshop in 2004 and the web sites they designed passed the Manila ICT Design Recommended accessibility compliance. They are the following:

The members were a mix of people working from the government, academe and the disability sectors.

PWAG is also supported by the following partners from both here and abroad:

  • Ms. Nelia De Jesus and Mr. Dandy Victa representing the National Council on Disability Affairs (NCDA)NCDA is the government agency tasked to formulate policies and programs for Persons with Disabilities (PWD) in the Philippines.
  • Ms. Grace Amberong representing Commission on Information and Communications Technology – National Computer Center (CICT – NCC)CICT-NCC is the government arm tasked to facilitate the development and implementation of a Government Information Systems Plan (GISP), in order to accelerate electronic governance in the country for greater productivity, give wider access to public information and provide for the faster delivery of basic services.
  • Mr. Leo Valdes representing Vision Office Support Services, Ltd. – Canada based Vision Office aims to empower users and organizations through management training, support, and implementation services.
  • Ms. Mel Pedley representing Guild of Accessible Web Designers (GAWDS)GAWDS is a worldwide association of professional organizations, web designers and developers working together to promote the use and preservation of accessible design standards.

Web Accessibility Initiatives in the Philippines

Photo-collage of PWAG's List of Accomplishments including partner-organizations
Photo-collage of PWAG's List of Accomplishments including partner-organizations
Timeline of Web Accessibility Trainings Conducted by PWAG since 2007 up to 2012
Timeline of Web Accessibility Trainings Conducted by PWAG since 2007 up to 2012

PWAG is slowly but surely putting its weight in shaping the information and communications technology climate in the Philippines by promoting web accessibility and helping in the designing of web standards.

To view the comprehensive history of Web Accessibility Initiatives in the Philippines, please visit the Wikipedia article http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_Accessibility_Initiatives_in_the_Philippines.