Section 508 Compliance Requirements and Guidance

As a State Agency, The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is required by law to ensure that all web content, and thereby research documents, comply with Federal Section 508 accessibility standards. These standards have been finalized by the Federal Access Board, and were put in place in order to make technology accessible for people with mobility, auditory and visual disabilities.

In order to comply with this Law, and in order to provide every citizen of the Commonwealth with access to all MassDOT information and documents, all Final Reports submitted to MassDOT must comply with all 508 standards. Additionally, it is the responsibility of the Principal Investigator (PI) to ensure that the document is fully accessible prior to submittal. We suggest that whenever possible, the 508 formatting guidelines are incorporated into the research report from the beginning of the writing process. You can download 508 Instructions and a Checklist for Guidance here. (508 Guidance.pdf)

Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act

“In 1998, Congress amended the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 to require Federal agencies to make their electronic and information technology (EIT) accessible to people with disabilities. Inaccessible technology interferes with an ability to obtain and use information quickly and easily. Section 508 was enacted to eliminate barriers in information technology, open new opportunities for people with disabilities, and encourage development of technologies that will help achieve these goals. The law applies to all Federal agencies when they develop, procure, maintain, or use electronic and information technology. Under Section508 (29 U.S.C. ‘794 d), agencies must give disabled employees and members of the public access to information that is comparable to access available to others.”

For more information about the Federal standards, please visit the Section 508 web site or the Federal Access Board web site.