Tag Archives: ADA

Participate in Retail Advisory Council for ADA & Accessibility for Self-Service and Kiosks

We are inviting any and all Retail companies to become a member of our Retail Advisory Council.  There is no cost and you are partitioned in a “safe harbor”. A distinct group segment from the actual kiosk manufacturers, or the installation and logistics companies, the financing companies or the companies providing components.

We here at the Kiosk Manufacturers Association work and talk ADA and Accessibility.  Once a year we meet with the U.S. Access Board. To make it easier for our suggestions and inputs to be accepted we have a wide interest Working Group.  Help us meet the standards by participating with us. It’s no cost.

If interested in more send us a note.

Here are first 10 stipulations for ANSI Requirements along with a full copy at the end.

ANSI Essential Requirements: Due process requirements for American National Standards

1.0 Essential requirements for due process
These requirements apply to activities related to the development of consensus for approval, revision,
reaffirmation, and withdrawal of American National Standards (ANS).

Due process means that any person (organization, company, government agency, individual, etc.) with a direct and material interest has a right to participate by: a) expressing a position and its basis, b) having that position considered, and c) having the right to appeal. Due process allows for equity and fair play. The following constitute the minimum acceptable due process requirements for the development of  consensus.

1.1 Openness
Participation shall be open to all persons who are directly and materially affected by the activity in question. There shall be no undue financial barriers to participation. Voting membership on the consensus body shall not be conditional upon membership in any organization, nor unreasonably restricted on the basis of technical qualifications or other such requirements.

1.2 Lack of dominance
The standards development process shall not be dominated by any single interest category, individual or organization. Dominance means a position or exercise of dominant authority, leadership, or influence by reason of superior leverage, strength, or representation to the exclusion of fair and equitable consideration of other viewpoints.

1.3 Balance
The standards development process should have a balance of interests. Participants from diverse interest
categories shall be sought with the objective of achieving balance. If a consensus body lacks balance in
accordance with the historical criteria for balance, and no specific alternative formulation of balance was
approved by the ANSI Executive Standards Council, outreach to achieve balance shall be undertaken.

1.4 Coordination and harmonization
Good faith efforts shall be made to resolve potential conflicts between and among existing American National Standards and candidate American National Standards.

1.5 Notification of standards development
Notification of standards activity shall be announced in suitable media as appropriate to demonstrate an
opportunity for participation by all directly and materially affected persons.

1.6 Consideration of views and objections
Prompt consideration shall be given to the written views and objections of all participants, including those commenting on the PINS announcement or public comment listing in Standards Action.

1.7 Consensus vote
Evidence of consensus in accordance with these requirements and the accredited procedures of the standards developer shall be documented.

1.8 Appeals
Written procedures of an ANSI-Accredited Standards Developer (ASD) shall contain an identifiable, realistic, and readily available appeals mechanism for the impartial handling of procedural appeals regarding any action or inaction. Procedural appeals include whether a technical issue was afforded due process.

1.9 Written procedures
Written procedures shall govern the methods used for standards development and shall be available to any
interested person.

1.10 Compliance with normative American National Standards policies and administrative procedures
All ANSI-Accredited Standards Developers (ASDs) are required to comply with the normative policies and
administrative procedures established by the ANSI Executive Standards Council or its designee.

ANSI-Essential-Requirements-2018

 

Craig is a  senior staff writer for Kiosk Industry Group Association. He has 25 years of experience in the industry. He contributed to this article.

U.S. Access Board 2018 Meeting KMA ADA Board

US Access BoardWe had our yearly meeting in Washington, DC on October 16th, 2018 and it was a productive meeting.  We thank the U.S. Access Board for having us and meeting with us. Thank you.

In attendance:
Devices for Show and Tell Included:
  • Audio NavPad we guess that is being tested by companies like Amazon and others [Storm Technology]
  • Haptic touchscreen with programmable friction  [Mimo Monitors]
Agenda

It was a full agenda and there were several takeways. Also KMA provided sample Smart City RFPs from actual requests to help the Access Board gain a better understanding of the role of ADA and Accessibility in those types of projects.

One of the agenda items was to introduce to the Access Board our new ADA and Accessibility Co-Chairs Laura Miller and Randy Amundson.

Thanks from all of us at KMA.

Click on any of the pictures for full size image.

 

For reference here is the FINAL DRAFT Whitepaper. The Use of Voice Recognition and Speech Command Technology as an Assistive Interface for ICT in Public Spaces for Audio. If you have comments please send them to [email protected] or contact Peter at Storm Interface.

Other related articles:

 

Airport Kiosk – FTE Trade Show In Vegas

Storm Interface KioskStorm Interface & Future Travel Experience (FTE)

By Craig Keefner — See Storm’s entire range of Assistive Technology Products (ATP) and find out more about exciting new product launches scheduled for later this year. These ATP devices are ADA compliant and RNIB Accredited, designed to offer menu navigation by means of audible content description. They allow users with impaired vision, reading difficulties or impaired fine motor skills to navigate through menus or directories that would typically be presented on a visual display or touch screen. Designed for use as the tactile/audio interface for any accessible self-service application such as kiosks, ticketing machines etc.

Storm Interface ADA

 

For more information contact:

Nicky Shaw
Storm Interface
USA Tel. 480-584-3518
Email: [email protected]
Web: www.storm-interface.com
Web link to these products: Storm Products

Editors Note:  Other members at the show include Daniel from Olea, Custom Printers, and Practical Automation.

Craig is a longtime writer of technical stories and documentation for many companies. He has 25 years of experience in the industry

ADA Kiosk Tech Brief – Gesture Technology

ADA Kiosk Tech Brief – Gesture TechnologyGesture Technology for Kiosk

Last week we went thru a demonstration of gesture technology for kiosk for use by handicapped users. People unable to move their arms.  People unable to speak.

People with ALS, Multiple Sclerosis, Spinal Cord Injury, Parkinsons, Cerebral Palsy and even some cases of Arthritis.

Furthermore, some people may not be able to use voice either, or even if they could, there may be noise or privacy concerns preventing use of voice.

We had a YouTube video created for us which demonstrates 3 different ways in which a user can choose buttons on a kiosk screen in a totally hands-free and voice-free fashion via use of head motion and/or smiling.

  1. Head pointing and dwell clicking.
  2. Head pointing and smile clicking.
  3. Smiling only (with scanning)

Gesture Technology for Kiosk

Gesture Kiosk Software additional info:

For more information email Uday at Percept-D here.

ADA Accessibility Tip – Integrating Storm NavPad

ADA Accessibility Tip – Integrating Storm NavPad

We get asked about configuring the Storm NavPad and it comes with API/SDK which lets programmers configure it. In Windows you can even light the lights so to speak.  There are firms that specialize in assisting with that exact sort of thing (listed on our ADA page).

Another less software intensive is to use a lockdown such as KioWare.  See the screenshots below.

See below —  the Accessibility screen for turning on Nav-Pad support.  Also, where you turn on JAWS and ZoomText.  Turning Nav-Pad on automatically creates Hotkeys for all the NavPad keys.

navpad hotkeys

Here are all the hotkeys

navpad hotkeys

And here we show all the different ways to configure a Hotkey.  The ‘Perform this action:’ list box has ~20 predefined actions: Begin/Renew Session, Copy, Paste, Toggle Virt Kbd, Volume Up/Down, etc…

navpad hotkey details

 

Section 508 Best Practices Webinar: Putting the Revised 508 Standards into Practice for Procurement

Section 508 Best Practices Webinar: Putting the Revised 508 Standards into Practice for Procurement 

Section 508 WebinarsSection 508 Webinars — The next webinar in the Section 508 Best Practices Webinar Series will take place May 29 from 1:00 to 2:30 (ET) and cover strategies for meeting the updated 508 Standards in federal procurements. Presenters from the General Services Administration (GSA) will review available tools and resources, such as an Applicability Checklist on the revised standards, a solicitation conformance template, a new conformance reporting tool for vendors, and GSA’s Accessibility Requirements Tool.

For more details or to register, visit www.accessibilityonline.org/cioc-508/session/?id=110667.

The Section 508 Best Practices Webinar Series provides helpful information and best practices for federal agencies in meeting their obligations under Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act which ensures access to information and communication technology in the federal sector. This webinar series is made available by the Accessibility Community of Practice of the CIO Council in partnership with the Access Board.

Section 508 Best Practices: Putting the Revised 508 Standards into Practice for Procurement      Add to Calendar
May 29, 2018, 1:00 – 2:30 (ET)
Presenters:
• John Sullivan, Government-wide Section 508 Program Director, GSA
• Kevin Funk, Program Analyst, GSA
• Kathy Eng, Senior ICT Accessibility Specialist, U.S. Access Board (moderator)
Registration: www.accessibilityonline.org/cioc-508/session/?id=110667

ADA Litigation – New Spin on Song-Beverly Act Litigation Against Retailers

A New Spin on Song-Beverly Act ADA Litigation Against Retailers

ADA litigationHow much data are you handing over at POS? How much data are you taking/handling?  New litigation in California points also at operative locations for devices which are capturing the data.

Excerpt:

Retailers operating brick-and-mortar stores in California are likely well aware of the state’s requirements for the collection of consumers’ personally identifiable information (PII). The Song-Beverly Credit Card Act of 1971 (the “Act”) imposes civil penalties for certain practices with respect to capturing and recording PII in cardholder transactions. See Cal. Civ. Code § 1747.08. Traditional litigation under the Act challenged retailers’ requests for telephone numbers, driver license numbers, and email addresses in connection with credit card payments at the point of sale. Beginning in 2011, when the California Supreme Court held that ZIP codes constitute PII, retailers most notably faced a wave of litigation regarding requests for customers’ ZIP codes at the point of sale before purchases were consummated. See Pineda v. Williams-Sonoma Stores, Inc., 51 Cal. 4th 524 (2011). As we reported in June 2017, filings in this area have garnered less attention in recent years as prudent retailers have modified certain aspects of their checkout policies and procedures.

https://www.natlawreview.com/article/new-spin-song-beverly-act-litigation-against-retailers

ADA Kiosk – U.S. Access Board Launches YouTube Channel

ADA Kiosk – U.S. Access Board Launches YouTube Channel

US Access BoardThe U.S. Access Board is a federal agency that promotes equality for people with disabilities through leadership in accessible design and the development of accessibility guidelines and standards. Its guidelines and standards address access to the built environment, information and communication technology, transportation, and medical diagnostic equipment. The Board also provides technical assistance and training on these design requirements and enforces accessibility standards that apply to facilities funded by the federal government. US Access-Board Website: https://www.access-board.gov/

More ADA Information

ADA Kiosk – UX for Disabled Webinar from Paciello Group April 25

UX for Disabled Webinar from Paciello Group April 25

ADA KioskADA kiosk question. How do you move from technical accessibility compliance to creating engaging, effective digital experiences for people with disabilities? One very successful way is to involve people with disabilities in User Experience (UX) activities throughout the lifecycle of a design and development project. But there can be challenges, from recruitment of participants to designing appropriately inclusive research activities.

This webinar will make the case for involving people with disabilities in UX research and development activities, and the value this effort brings, and will provide you with some practical advice on how to involve people with disabilities in your UX work.

Attendees will learn:
* How to plan and schedule UX activities with people with disabilities to get the right input at the right time for your project
* Effective ways for recruiting and involving people with disabilities in research activities
* Tips for ensuring that UX activities are inclusive to people with a range of disabilities
* How you can obtain quality results that have impact on your project, and beyond.

ADA Seminar Registration Link

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7584161118499647747

ADA – U.S. Access Board Webinar: Open Question and Answer Session (March 1)

U.S. Access Board Webinar: Open Question and Answer Session (March 1)U.S. Access Board Webinar: Open Question and Answer Session (March 1)

The next webinar in the U.S. Access Board‘s free monthly series will take place March 1 from 2:30 – 4:00 (ET)and feature an open question-and-answer session. Questions are welcome on any of the Board‘s guidelines or standards, including the ADA and ABA Accessibility Standards and new standards for medical diagnostic equipment, as well as other topics related to the work of the Board. Questions can be submitted in advance or during the session.

Visit www.accessibilityonline.org for more information or to register. Webinar attendees can earn continuing education credits. The webinar series is hosted by the ADA National Network in cooperation with the Board. Archived copies of previous Board webinars are available on the site.

ADA Kiosk – Congress Weighs Changes To ADA

Congress Votes on H.R. 620 which impacts ADA kiosk

aka ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017


ADA kiosk

Update:  The House passed the bill 2/15/2018 along party lines.

The ADA Education and Reform Act, or H.R.620, is slated to come up for a full vote in the U.S. House of Representatives Wednesday or Thursday. But detractors say the bill would gut the part of the landmark ADA law which requires public businesses to make accommodations allowing for ease of entry for people with disabilities.

Source: www.disabilityscoop.com

Something needs to be done about predatory lawyers for sure but this doesn’t do it. It basically drops the bar for companies a couple of notches and eliminates any legal action. Remains to be seen whether companies decide long term it is in their interest to deploy assistive infrastructure now, or later.

ADA lawsuits are already one of the lowest categories of lawsuits filed against businesses. The Center for American Progress has reported that the small uptick in ADA litigation can be attributed to “just 12 individual attorneys and a single disability law firm” which filed more than 100 cases each.

The likely outcome we predict is a vote along party lines in the house passes the bill and then it goes to the Senate where it will likely be blocked.

Another point of view:  Seems it only adds a 180 window to the process of filing suit is all. You get 180 to make significant improvements. What determines significant vs. insignificant? So long as there is real money available through these lawsuits you’ll have trolls.

Full text of H.R. 620

https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/620/text

ACLU Take on it

The entrance to the post office in a small town was up a flight of 20 steps. When told he needed to make the post office accessible to wheelchair users, the postmaster was befuddled. “I’ve been here for thirty-five years and in all that time I’ve yet to see a single customer come in here in a wheelchair,” he said, according to Joe Shapiro in his 1994 book, “No Pity.”

https://www.aclu.org/blog/disability-rights/house-members-are-pushing-bill-will-roll-back-rights-people-disabilities


Tom Ridge R-PA Opinion piece from The Hill

Back in 1990, President Bush told the business community they hold in their hands the key to the success of the ADA, for it can “unlock a splendid resource of untapped human potential that, when freed, will enrich us all.” He characterized passage of the ADA as one of his proudest achievements. Let’s not undo that success.

TTom Ridge is founder and chairman of Ridge Global, as well as chair of theNational Organization on Disability, a position he has held since 2006. He was America’s first secretary of Homeland Security and the 43rd Governor of Pennsylvania.

http://thehill.com/opinion/civil-rights/373546-rolling-back-the-civil-rights-of-the-disabled-harms-us-all


Rep. Ted Poe R-TX (author of bill)

Passing H.R. 620 is good for all stakeholders. Simply having notice of claimed violations with a sufficient level of detail and the opportunity to cure within a limited time period prior to filing a lawsuit will eliminate the abusive tactics that have become commonplace.

http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/judicial/373555-its-time-to-restore-the-integrity-of-the-ada


Wheelchair-bound protesters dragged out of congressional hearing

Feb. 13, 2018, 7:37 PM WASHINGTON — Demonstrators interrupting a hearing in the House Rules Committee to protest reforms to the Americans with Disabilities Act were arrested and dragged out of the room inside the US Capitol on Tuesday.

http://www.businessinsider.com/wheelchair-bound-protesters-dragged-out-of-congressional-hearing-2018-2


Why Congress is Close to Gutting Key Provision of ADA

Pacific Standard 2/14/18 — Unscrupulous lawyers are a problem, so let’s work on sanctioning them. As Dara Baldwin says, “You got bad apples, go after the bad apples!” What shouldn’t happen is a legislative assault, fueled by donations from retail groups, on the fundamental right to equal access for people with disabilities.

https://psmag.com/social-justice/congress-is-close-to-gutting-a-key-provision-of-the-ada


Big thanks to Steve Taylor of Taylor Stands for his help with this. Thanks Steve!

Taylor Stands makes patented ADA compliant POS assist device.  People in wheelchairs can easily pull the terminal closer for easier and private access.

ADA – U.S. Access Board Issues Correction to ICT Refresh Final Rule

U.S. Access Board Issues Correction to ICT Refresh Final Rule

Kiosk ADAThe U.S. Access Board has issued a correction to its updated accessibility requirements for information and communication technology (ICT) to restore provisions on TTY access that were inadvertently omitted. The action applies to the final rule the Board published last January to jointly refresh its Rehabilitation Act (Section 508) standards for ICT in the federal sector and its Communications Act (Section 255) guidelines for telecommunications equipment.

The original Section 508 standards and Section 255 guidelines required that devices with two-way voice communication support use of TTY devices which provide text communication across phone connections for persons with hearing or speech impairments. In its ICT refresh, the Board had proposed replacing this provision with a requirement for real-time text (RTT) functionality, a new technology with significant advantages over TTYs. RTT transmits text in virtual real-time as each character is typed, whereas TTY messages can only be sent individually in sequence. Also, RRT technology is directly compatible with wireless and Internet protocol (IP) based networks.

In finalizing its rule, however, the Board chose to reserve the RTT requirement because the Federal Communications Commission had initiated its own rulemaking to address RTT functionality over TTY compatibility in IP-based telecommunication environments. In doing so, the Board intended to add the original TTY provision back into the rule, but the necessary language was unintentionally left out. The recent correction restores the TTY requirement with minor editorial changes for consistency with the new format and terminology of the updated requirements (Section 412.8). It also corrects a couple typographical errors in other sections of the rule. The corrections become effective March 23, 2018 without further action unless adverse comments are received within 30 days.

ADA Accessibility – Storm Interface – Software and Configuration of NavBar

How To Configure Storm Interface Accessibility NavBar NavPad

Here are some quick notes on configuring Storm Interface products.


audio nav ada device
Audio navigation device. Click for full size. Courtesy Storm Interface

The functionality of the Nav-Bar is the same as that for all of Storm’s ATP products.

It enumerates as a combined HID/audio device, so no special drivers or software is required. Connection to the host system is via a single USB cable. When a headset is inserted into the audio jack or a button is pressed, the keypad transmits a unique keycode to the host system. Upon receipt of the keycode, the host system must de designed such that it will act appropriately. For example, upon receipt of the keycode for ‘Jack In’ then the audio should start playing.

The products dispatched from the factory are configured to use the default key code tables (as shown in the attached, which is a page from the product’s technical manual). If required, these keycodes can be changed by the customer by using a free software utility provided by Storm. This software utility is available to download from Storm’s website here:

http://www.storm-interface.com/downloads/?dlcat=Software

(Nav-Bar™ with Audio Module Utility version 6.0)

How to use the software utility is explained in the technical manual which I’ve attached, please see page 17 & 18.

=============================================

The USB key-press codes can also be changed to whatever is required. Up/Down keys can be multi-media volume control or HID keyboard up/down

We also supply an API so that the host machine can interact directly with our product.

Instructions for the Utility and the API are included in the Technical Manual for each product.

See links to these below

Link to Nav-Pad product page showing available downloads for Software Utilities and Technical Manual

http://www.storm-interface.com/assistive-technology-products/nav-padtm/nav-pad-8-keys-usb-interface-audio-processor.html

Link to Nav-Bar product page showing available downloads for Software Utilities and Technical Manual

http://www.storm-interface.com/assistive-technology-products/nav-bar/navbartm-silver-white-keys-under-panel-mount.html

Storm Interface

ADA News – RNIB Testing Confirms Compliance with ADA Requirements

RNIB Testing Confirms Compliance with ADA Requirements

With so much conflicting information about what manufacturers should do to ensure compliance with ADA, Storm Interface approached the RNIB for guidance and confirmation of conformance.

The Royal National Institute for Blind People provide laboratory testing and accreditation services to the World Blind Union and are one of the world’s (if not the most)  recognized authorities in the accessibility sector. Storm had previously been commended by the RNIB for their work in achieving accessibility, but thought it best to specifically confirm compliance with ADA.

The following is a copy of their conclusions. These were drawn after completion of a comprehensive test program and assessment of Storm’s assistive technology product range.  Storm is proud to have been recognized by the Royal National Institute for Blind People under their “RNIB Tried and Tested” program.

rnib storm interface

January 2018

Dear Peter,

RNIB have assessed the various Storm keypads for compliance with the ADA standard for input devices (707.6) and our findings are summarised below. The Storm keyboards included are:

1. NavBar
a. Black with coloured keys EZB6-63000
b. Black with white keys EZB6-53000
c. Silver-grey with coloured keys EZB6-73002
d. Silver-grey with white keys EZB6-43000

2. NavPad
a. 5 Button EZ05-23001
b. 6 Button EZ06-23001
c. 8 Button EZ08-23001

3. AudioNav 1406-33001

707.6.1 Input Controls.
The ADA states: “At least one tactilely discernible input control shall be provided for each function. Where provided, key surfaces not on active areas of display screens, shall be raised above surrounding surfaces. Where membrane keys are the only method of input, each shall be tactilely discernible from surrounding surfaces and adjacent keys.”

RNIB assessment:
1. NavBar (all models specified above)
The Nav-Bar has 6 raised buttons in different shapes. The buttons are easy to feel and press and have tactile markings on them as well to help with identification.
Conclusion: RNIB believes this passes the ADA requirements

2. NavPad (5, 6 or 8 keys)
The Nav-Pad comes in three different designs and had 5, 6 or 8 buttons in different shapes. The buttons are easy to feel and press and have tactile markings on them as well to help with identification.
Conclusion: RNIB believes this passes the ADA requirements

3. AudioNav
The silver Audio-Nav has 5 buttons around a centre button. There are tactile markings on each of the 4 arrow buttons and a tactile circle on the centre OK button. The buttons are easy to feel.
Conclusion: RNIB believes this passes the ADA requirements

707.6.2: Numeric keys.
This is not applicable as there are no numeric keypads on the keyboards tested.

707.6.3.1 Contrast.
The ADA states: “Function keys shall contrast visually from background surfaces. Characters and symbols on key surfaces shall contrast visually from key surfaces. Visual contrast shall be either light-on-dark or dark-on-light.”

RNIB assessment:
RNIB assesses the colour contrast using simulation glasses developed by Cambridge University (http://www.inclusivedesigntoolkit.com/csg/csg.html). These glasses simulate a general loss of ability to see fine detail including cloudy vision. RNIB uses the benchmark given by the developers which indicates that the product excludes less than 1% of the population.

1. NavBar (all models specified above)
The text and icons on the buttons have been tested with sim specs to simulate reduced contrast. The contrast passes in the sense that it ‘excludes less than 1% of the population’. For ADA we believe this will be sufficient.

The buttons on the black and the silver/grey Nav-Bar have been tested with the sim specs and it passes in the sense that it ‘excludes less than 1% of the population’. For ADA we believe this will be sufficient.

Conclusion: RNIB believes this passes the ADA requirements

2. NavPad
The text and icons on the buttons have been tested with sim specs to simulate reduced contrast. The contrast passes in the sense that it ‘excludes less than 1% of the population’. For ADA we believe this will be sufficient.

The buttons on the brushed silver background have been tested with the sim specs and the contrast passes in the sense that they ‘exclude less than 1% of the population’. For ADA we believe this will be sufficient.

Conclusion: RNIB believes this passes the ADA requirements

3. AudioNav
On the silver Audio-Nav the buttons have been tested with the sim specs and the contrast passes in the sense that they ‘exclude less than 1% of the population’. For ADA we believe this will be sufficient.

Conclusion: RNIB believes this passes the ADA requirements

707.6.3.2 Tactile Symbols.
The standard states: “Function key surfaces shall have tactile symbols as follows: Enter or Proceed key: raised circle; Clear or Correct key: raised left arrow; Cancel key: raised letter ex; Add Value key: raised plus sign; Decrease Value key: raised minus sign.”

RNIB assessment:
1. NavBar
The only button that this applies to is the round OK/Enter button. This button is round and has a tactile circle on the top. The tactile circle is very easy to feel.
Conclusion: RNIB believes this passes the ADA requirements

2. NavPad
The only button that this applies to is the round OK/Enter button. This button is round and has a tactile circle on the top. The tactile circle is very easy to feel.
Conclusion: RNIB believes this passes the ADA requirements

3. AudioNav
The OK button in the centre of the Audio-Nav has a tactile circle on it that is easy to feel.
Conclusion: RNIB believes this passes the ADA requirements

Disclaimer
RNIB has used its best endeavours to provide this opinion basing our results on the testing as specified above. RNIB cannot accept any responsibility or liability for claims made against this opinion.

Yours sincerely,

Scott Lynch
Managing Director – RNIB Solutions

Storm Interface and Tech for All Announce Collaboration

Storm InterfaceMEDIA RELEASE
Contact: Peter Jarvis
Storm Interface
Phone: +44 (0)1895 456200
Email: [email protected]
London, England. January 2018
Web: www.storm-interface.com

Storm Interface and Tech for All build on a shared vision

As the ICT sector in the U.S. is challenged to conform with the ADA and other accessibility regulations, two leading experts are collaborating to offer compliant and effective solutions.

Storm InterfaceAggressive and high profile class actions against well-known retailers, restaurant chains, vending machine operators, healthcare providers and major airlines have sent a cold shiver through businesses deploying touch-screen, self-service terminals. It is becoming clear that anything less than full compliance with both domestic and international mandates creates significant litigation risks. Inevitably this harms reputations and may lead to costly court-supervised settlements.

Many businesses are striving to make their products, services and infrastructure as accessible as they can possibly be and not just to achieve compliance. This forward thinking universal design approach improves usability for all users including those with sensory impairment or limited mobility. It improves efficiency, productivity, and enhances their relationship with the consumer.

Storm Interface and Tech for All, Inc. have announced a formal collaboration to help clients deliver accessible experiences for people with disabilities. Storm Interface is the UK manufacturer of audible system interfaces and content navigation devices. Tech for All is a leading US-based international consulting firm focused on the accessibility and universal design of electronic, information, and communication technologies.

“The inter-dependence of accessible hardware and effectively designed application software is obvious”, said Storm’s Peter Jarvis. “However, too often ICT designers and specifiers consider the two factors of accessibility separately, as if they were unrelated”. Storm works with specialist kiosk software developers to ensure that Storm’s USB-connected devices are universally supported throughout the ICT sector. By collaborating with established expert developers such as Tech for All, Storm is able to provide clients with a complete accessibility solution.

Tech for All’s Caesar Eghtesadi agrees, “Our collaborative development approach produces a synergistic accessible design that delivers a successful experience for all users, including those with disabilities. This coordinated development approach is more cost-effective and efficient than the current adapt-and-patch approach.”

Background Information:

About Storm Interface
For more than 30 years Storm Interface have designed and manufactured secure, rugged and reliable keypads,keyboards and interface devices. Storm products are built to withstand rough use and abuse in unattended public-use and industrial applications. Storm Assistive Technology Products are recognized by the Royal National Institute for Blind People under their ‘RNIB Tried and Tested’ program.www.storm-interface.com

About Tech for All, Inc.
Tech for All, Inc. has for over 16 years served small to Fortune 500 companies in several industries, educational institutions, NGOs, and government agencies. It provides a full range of accessibility consulting services including planning, evaluation, design, development support, testing, implementation/deployment,  and monitoring. www.TFAConsulting.com

Our contact details are as follows:
USA
Storm Interface
13835 N Tatum Blvd. Suite 9-510
Phoenix, AZ 85032
Tel: +1 480 584 3518
Email: [email protected]

Tech for All, Inc.
P.O. Box 213473
Royal Palm Beach, FL 33421
Tel: +1 561 333 2835
Email: [email protected]

UK, Europe and Other Territories
Storm Interface
14 Bentinck Court
Bentinck Road
West Drayton
Middlesex
UB7 7RQ
United Kingdom
Tel +44 (0)1895 431421
Email: [email protected]

In Kiosk ADA News – U.S. Access Board Meeting

In Kiosk ADA News – U.S. Access Board Meeting

Kiosk Industry Group Association Quarterly News – Washington, D.C., Meeting with Access Board and Summit Research Report on Self-Checkout

Access Board Meeting

In Kiosk Industry Association news is the successful meeting with the U.S. Access Board on how best for the Association to work for the Access Board towards improving ADA accessibility guidelines. Here is the write-up with photos.

From Bruce Bailey of U.S. Access Board: “Thanks everyone for meeting with us. From our perspective, the meeting was quite informative and we very much look forward to working with you all in the future.”

One discussion point is the possibility for some kind of kiosk industry voluntary consensus document for accessibility. That would mean following ANSI process for the group.

From our perspective, the meeting was quite informative and we very much look forward to working with you all in the future.

 BRUCE BAILEY, ACCESSIBILITY SPECIALIST, U.S. ACCESS BOARD

Some of the hallmarks of that type of organization are:

  • Consensus must be reached by representatives from materially affected and interested parties
  • Standards are required to undergo public reviews when any member of the public may submit comments
  • Comments from the consensus body and public review commenters must be responded to in good faith

Also in the news  — Summit Research and Francie Mendelsohn present a new “shootout” report on “honest” self-checkout at Johns Hopkins and the hybrid POS checkout by Harris Tweeter.

As Francie says, “In this article we will look at two Self-Checkout kiosk deployments, illustrating one that is highly successful and one that is anything but. Because we have long seen that would-be kiosk providers and users will remember the failures far more often than the successes, we will devote the bulk of the discussion to that less-than-successful deployment.”

Francie Mendelsohn is a highly respected kiosk industry consultant with many years of experience. She has authored and compiled multiple research reports on the industry over the years.

Finally, we want to announce two new sponsors. At the Gold level is Pyramid, which provides self-order units for QSR and Fast Casual (such as McDonalds, etc.) along with new beacon location technology for customers. Pyramid currently operates in Europe and the U.K. and is expanding its operations in the U.S. At the Bronze level, we welcome Storm Interface which specializes in input devices and assistive technology (e.g., Audio Navigation Keypad).

In related news, the Association follows self-service RFP and news in the Smart City and Digital Signage market as well as the QSR McDonalds space.

About the Kiosk Industry Group

The Kiosk Industry Group is a news and marketing association for self-service and kiosk manufacturers. It is for the benefit of kiosk manufacturers, developers, resources and client companies who are involved in self-service transaction machines (SSTM). News about the industry and by the industry is published on our website when it is relevant to companies that deploy or may deploy self-service or to companies that support those deployers with hardware, software or applications. The Kiosk Industry Group has been active since 1995. Our audience this year on the website is 50,000 (human). Visit https://kioskindustry.org for more information.

Media Contact:

Craig Keefner
303-261-8836
[email protected]

Source: Kiosk Industry Group Association


Categories: Business TechnologyCompliance and RegulationsRetail Technology

Tags: ADAkiosk manufacturermcdonaldsqsr


Additional Images

Access Board Meeting Access Board Meeting Self-Checkout Feature Pyramid Information

About CAKCEK

View Website

Manages kiosk association as well as thinclient and retail properties.

A New Era of Accessibility – Audio Navigation

A NEW ERA OF ACCESSIBILITY

In compliance with ADA Standards for Accessible Design, new US Department of Transport regulations come into effect during 2016. These new mandates are intended to increase accessibility for those with sensory or mobility impairment.

Sight-impaired travelers will be able to access information and services via kiosks and ticketing machines by connection of a personal headset.

The host system will detect the connection of a headset as a signal to begin an audible summary of the information and services presented on the kiosk’s display screen or touch screen.  A highly tactile keypad will enable those with no vision or low vision to navigation through those audible menus and make selections by a simple key press.

This Audio Navigation technology will also help non-readers.  Some agencies consider that an inability to read may be the world’s most common form of disability; regardless of whether such inability stems from physiological, educational, cultural or cognitive reasons.

Storm Interface has been working with lead agencies and kiosk manufacturers to provide practical and affordable assistive technology solutions. They manufacture the Nav-Pad™ keypads currently used in many applications, including the Global Entry kiosks located in the immigration halls at most major US airports.

Storm has also been working with its long-time partner NCR Corporation in the development of a new generation of intuitive Audio-Navigation solutions for use in travel and self check-out applications. These activities have lead to the introduction of a new ADA compliant assistive keypad: the Audio-Nav.  The Audio-Nav is easy to install and easy to use. It features tactile identifiers (tac-idents) to assist those with impaired vision. The ‘tac-idents’, keytops and connectors also feature integral illumination to assist those with partial vision or any residual light/dark perception.

The new Audio-Nav keypad also includes an integrated sound processor and headset connection to make audio communication with the host system as clear and intuitive as it can be. It is intended for use in conjunction with compliant text-to-speech applications.

audio navigation ada device
Audio navigation device. Click for full size. Courtesy Storm Interface

More information

About Storm Interface

Storm Interface is an award winning, UK based, manufacturer of human interface devices.

The Storm range of secured, sealed and toughened data entry devices are field proven and laboratory tested. They are constructed to survive in the most demanding applications and environments.  Since 1986, Storm’s design, technology and manufacturing quality have established Storm products as the industry standard for durability and reliability.

www.storm-interface.com

About NCR Corporation

NCR Corporation (NYSE: NCR) is the global leader in consumer transaction technologies, turning everyday interactions with businesses into exceptional experiences. With its software, hardware, and portfolio of services, NCR enables more than 550 million transactions daily across retail, financial, travel, hospitality, telecom and technology, and small business. NCR solutions run the everyday transactions that make your life easier.

NCR is headquartered in Duluth, Georgia with over 30,000 employees and does business in 180 countries. NCR is a trademark of NCR Corporation in the United States and other countries.

Making Japan Accessible to All RISING NHK WORLD English

Making Japan Accessible

 

Universal design aims to create an environment accessible to all, regardless of age, or linguistic or physical limitations. As Tokyo prepares for the 2020 Olympics and Paralympics, one venture firm working to make Japan a world leader in this area is led by Toshiya Kakiuchi. Wheelchair bound since childhood due to brittle bone disease, this young entrepreneur provides consulting on facilities and services for the disabled, aiming to change preconceptions and facilitate true hospitality.

Source: www.youtube.com

Very good documentary on Toshiya Kakiuchi and Japan accessibility features. Includes Narita airport and restaurants.

At one point the employees of Narita don glasses, weights and other encumbrances to simulate disability and how the airport works and doesn’t work for them.

ADA News – US Access Board Meeting in Washington, D.C.

ADA News – US Access Board Meeting in Washington, D.C.

On November 1st as part of our ADA Committee, several of us traveled to Washington, DC to meet with the U.S. Access Board.

US Access Board meet in Washington

The reason for visiting was to introduce ourselves to each other, discuss how we can work together more closely and give the Board an update on some of the latest access technology being used in the self-service space.

The discussions were wide-ranging and what started off as a 90 minute session transformed into 3 hours of conversation.

From Bruce Bailey of U.S. Access Board, “Thanks everyone for meeting with us and to Craig for organizing the visit.  

From our perspective, the meeting was quite informative and we very much look forward to working with you all in the future.”

Major takeaways for us with the kiosk industry group association is coming up with a voluntary consensus document for accessibility. And doing that in process that follows the ANSI process.  That means:

    • Consensus must be reached by representatives from materially affected and interested parties
    • Standards are required to undergo public reviews when any member of the public may submit comments
    • Comments from the consensus body and public review commenters must be responded to in good faith

Finally, but hardly least, is that David Capozzi mentioned the “AIM HIGH Act”.  It is not about kiosks per se, but it is the most likely pending legislation to require participation.  It is just a bill for now, but it has been reintroduced a few times, so it seems to be getting close.

http://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/1772

Members of the U.S. Access Board attending included:

    • David M. Capozzi, Executive Director
    • Marsha Mazz, Director
    • Bruce Bailey – Accessibility IT Specialist
    • Timothy Creagan – Senior Accessibility IT Specialist
    • Rex Pace – Technical Assistance Coordinator

Members of the Kiosk Industry ADA Committee attending included:

Photo Gallery (click for full size)

 

The Kiosk Industry Group Association also wishes to thank Michael Lee and the ATMIA for assistance rendered, along with Jason Oxman of the ETA.

US Access Board

 

‘Drive-by’ lawsuits under disabilities statute costing economy

In the House of Representatives, a bipartisan bill has passed the House Judiciary Committee and awaits action by the House. This legislation requires that attorneys give notice to business owners before a lawsuit is filed. If the ADA problems — inaccessible bathrooms, parking lots, ramps, etc. — are not fixed within 120 days, the lawsuit proceeds. 

But, if the business fixes the problems, a lawsuit would be moot. This would be a true win-win for everyone — other than the trial attorneys. In fact, some plaintiffs from ADA drive-by lawsuits are actually suing their supposed attorneys because they were deceived about the nature of the lawsuits filed.

Source: thehill.com

ADA – News from the U.S. Access Board – September/ October 2017

Access Board logoAccess Currents 
News from the U.S. Access Board  •  September/ October 2017

 

  • Access Board to Host Workshop Comparing Accessibility in the U.S. and Australia
  • GSA Holds Interagency Forum on Refreshed Section 508 Standards
  • Access Board to Meet November 15
  • Upcoming Board Webinars
  • Mayer-Rothschild Foundation Releases Report on Grab Bar Research
  • Transportation Research Board Issues Airport Wayfinding Guide

Access Board to Host Workshop Comparing Accessibility in the U.S. and Australia

US & Australian flagsThe Access Board will host a workshop with accessibility experts from Australia on November 13that will compare how building accessibility is addressed in Australia and the U.S. The public is welcome to the free event which will explore methods used in both countries to regulate, monitor, and enforce compliance with accessibility requirements. The goal is to foster a better understanding of how covered entities meet their responsibilities under civil rights and other laws governing access to the built environment.

Representing Australia will be Michael Small, a former government official and the recipient of a Churchill Fellowship to study building accessibility from an international perspective. He was active in drafting Australia’s building accessibility regulations and standards and also produced a variety of resources to assist building professionals in meeting them. He will be joined by Robin Banks, a consultant in human rights who formerly headed the Australian Public Interest Advocacy Centre and served as a state Anti-Discrimination Commissioner.

The Access Board has invited panelists from disability rights organizations, building codes groups, government, the design profession, and industry. The structured portion of the program will run from 9:30 to noon. Following a break for lunch, there will be an informal guided discussion with invited panelists, other participants, and members of the public that will cover implementation, particularly in relation to alterations and additions to existing facilities. The public can attend in person or remotely through a phone bridge with communication access real-time translation (CART). Call-in instructions and the CART link will be posted on the Board’s website at a later date.

For further information, contact Marsha Mazz at (202) 272-0020(v), (202) 272- 0076 (TTY), or [email protected].

Achieving Access for People with Disabilities in the Built Environment: An International Comparison
November 13, 9:30 – 12:00 (ET), followed by an informal discussion after the lunch break
Access Board Conference Center
1331 F Street, NW, Suite 800
Washington, D.C.
Dial-in Number: (877) 701-1628, International: (517) 268-2743; Passcode: 69545743
CART Link: [to be posted]
Note: For the comfort of all participants and to promote a fragrance-free environment, attendees are requested not to use perfume, cologne, or other fragrances.

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GSA Holds Interagency Forum on Refreshed Section 508 Standards

David Capozzi speaking at GSA forumlThe General Services Administration (GSA) held an interagency forum on accessibility to information and communication technology (ICT) on October 13 at its national headquarters in Washington, D.C. The full-day event focused on the refreshed Section 508 Standards issued by the Access Board in January which apply to ICT procured, developed, maintained, or used by federal agencies. The Access Board and several other agencies partnered with GSA in conducting the event, including the Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy, the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Department of Homeland Security. It attracted over 350 attendees from government, industry, and advocacy.

The day started off with welcoming remarks from Dominic Sale, Deputy Associate Administrator for GSA’s Office of Information, Integrity & Access and a keynote address by Access Board Executive Director David Capozzi.

“Although section 508 only applies to the federal government, its impact has been felt in state governments, the private sector, and around the world,” Capozzi noted. “Last year, the U.S. government spent about $80 billion on ICT; when you can harness that purchasing power to drive accessibility, progress is bound to happen.”

Capozzi recounted the history of Section 508 and called attention to its global effects. “The European Union now has a new set of ICT accessibility standards – modeled after our updated section 508 standards; Australia is using public procurement to drive accessible technology; and, Canada is developing a new law that will address public procurement of ICT as well,” he stated. “The world is paying attention to what we do here.”

The forum featured a series of workshops organized into tracks on ICT development, agency policy, and the revised 508 Standards. Representatives from the Access Board and other agencies conducted the sessions which addressed different aspects of Section 508 and the standards, including major changes in the updated standards, how the standards apply to federal acquisitions, IT development contracts and the IT lifecycle, revisions to federal agency Section 508 policies, testing methods and other topics. The event also provided an opportunity to publicize new tools and resources, including a“Toolkit” on the revised 508 standards developed by an interagency transition team and the Information Technology Industry Council’s recent release of an updated Voluntary Product Accessibility Template which businesses can use to document product conformance with the revised standards.

For further information on the Section 508 Standards, visit the Board’s website and GSA’s section508.gov website.

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Access Board to Meet November 15

Laptop with Board meeting on screenThe Access Board will hold its next meeting on November 15 from 1:30 – 3:00 (ET) at the Board’s conference space in downtown Washington, D.C. The public is welcome to attend in person or through a live webcast of the meeting. A public comment period will be held during the final 15 minutes of the meeting. Those interested in making comments in person or by phone should send an email to Rose Bunales at [email protected] by November 8 with “Access Board meeting – Public Comment” in the subject line. Please include your name, organization, state, and topic of your comment in the body of the message.

Meeting of the U.S. Access Board
November 15, 1:30 – 3:00
Webcast link: www.access-board.gov/webcast
Access Board Conference Center
1331 F Street, NW, Suite 800
Washington, D.C.
Note: For the comfort of all participants and to promote a fragrance-free environment, attendees are requested not to use perfume, cologne, or other fragrances.

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Upcoming Board Webinars

laptop with Access Board sealThe next webinar in the Board’s free monthly series will take place November 2 from 2:30 – 4:00 (ET) and review differences between the ADA Standards and counterpart provisions in the International Building Code (IBC) and the accessibility standard it references, the ANSI A117.1 Standard. While the ADA Standards and IBC/ANSI A117.1 were largely harmonized, substantive differences remain. In addition, the newly released 2017 edition of the A117.1 standard includes additional changes not reflected in the ADA Standards. A representative from the International Code Council, which maintains the IBC and published the new A117.1 standard, will partner with the Board to highlight differences between these documents, answer questions, and clarify common areas of confusion.

For more information or to register, visit www.accessibilityonline.org. Questions can be submitted in advance of the session (total limited to 25) or can be posed during the webinar. Webinar attendees can earn continuing education credits. The webinar series is hosted by the ADA National Network in cooperation with the Board. Archived copies of previous Board webinars are available on the site.

Section 508 Best Practices Webinar
The Board also offers a free webinar series on standards issued under Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act which requires access to information and communication technology in the federal sector. This year’s sessions focus on the updated Section 508 Standards published by the Board in January. The next webinar in this series is scheduled forNovember 28 from 1:00 to 2:30 (ET) and will review available resources explaining the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0. Issued by the W3C’s Web Accessibility Initiative (WIA), WCAG 2.0 is a globally recognized, technology-neutral standard for accessible web content. The Board’s updated Section 508 Standards reference WCAG 2.0 Success Criteria Level A and AA and applies them not only to web-based content but to other electronic content as well. This session will cover various technical assistance materials issued by the W3C’s WIA to support use of the WCAG 2.0, including a customizable reference guide and guidance on developing conformant web content.

For more details or to register for this session, visit www.accessibilityonline.org/cioc-508/schedule. The Section 508 Best Practices Webinar Series is made available by the Accessibility Community of Practice of the CIO Council in partnership with the Board.

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Mayer-Rothschild Foundation Releases Report on Grab Bar Research

Mayer-Rothschild Foundation logoAt the Access Board’s September meeting, Board members received a briefing on the results of recent research sponsored by Mayer-Rothschild Foundation on grab bar specifications for independent and assisted toilet transfers in residential care facilities.

The study used subject testing to assess preferred configurations, dimensions, and placement of grab bars at toilets. Project Director Jon Sanford of Georgia Tech’s Center for Assistive Technology and Environmental Access and Margaret Calkins of the Mayer-Rothschild Foundation presented the findings from the project. The study tested the side and rear grab bar configuration required by the ADA Standards, parallel fold-down grab bars on both sides, and customized configurations preferred by test subjects. The subject pool included seniors who can bear weight and transfer independently and those who required assistance. Researchers collected feedback from both elders and caregivers on various specifications, including grab bar length, height, positioning, as well as spatial dimensions and clearances for assisted transfers.

There was strong preference, highly consistent among transfer types, for a hybrid configuration with fold-down grab bars on both sides approximately 13″ – 14″ from the toilet centerline along with a fixed grab bar on one side two feet from the toilet centerline. The optimal configurations were further tested in follow-up field trials and in laboratory biomechanical evaluations. Researchers also conducted force tests on bilateral fold-down grab bars to determine their maximum weight capacity.

These and other findings are discussed in the project report, “Determination of Grab Bar Specifications for Independent and Assisted Transfers in Residential Care Settings.” The research was funded by the Hulda B. & Maurice L. Rothschild Foundation, a national philanthropy dedicated to improving long-term care for elders. Visit the Mayer-Rothschild Foundation’s website for further information.

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Transportation Research Board Issues Airport Wayfinding Guide

Enhancing Airport Wayfinding for Aging Travelers and Persons with Disabilities (cover)The Transportation Research Board (TRB) has published a guidebook on airport wayfinding for people who are elderly or have a disability under its Airport Cooperative Research Program. The new resource,Enhancing Airport Wayfinding for Aging Travelers and Persons with Disabilities, offers best practices for improving and optimizing information for wayfinding and travel by people with cognitive, sensory, or mobility challenges in the complex environment of airports. It is intended to help airport operators and planners implement pedestrian wayfinding systems in standardized accessible formats to better serve travelers with disabilities or who are elderly.

The guidebook includes an airport wayfinding accessibility audit, guidance on creating wayfinding plans, information on best practices and available technologies and state-of-the-art techniques for wayfinding, and other topics. Further information is available on TRB’s website.

Self-Service Association ADA Initiative

ADA Initiative

EASTLAKE, Colo., Oct. 11, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Self-Service Association ADA Initiative. The self-service and kiosk industry association forms AD

Source: www.prnewswire.com

EXCERPT:

EASTLAKE, Colo.Oct. 11, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — The Kiosk Industry Group Association has formed an ADA committee and an ADA working group.  And in November travel to Washington, DC to meet with the U.S. Access Board, the group responsible for writing ADA regulations.  The idea is to work with the Access Board on an ongoing basis to help them better define regulations.  We are also working with the ATMIA (www.atmia.com) as well and the ETA (www.electran.org) in this regard. Participation in the working group is open to all interested parties.

The ADA committee currently consists of Olea KiosksKiosk Information SystemsFrank Mayer and AssociatesKioWareTurnkey Kiosks and iPadKIosks.

Self-Service For All – ADA

Touchscreen-based self-service technology is changing the way we do business, but one of the key challenges to widespread adoption is finding a way to make that technology useable by everyone.

Self-Service For All – ADA feature

By Richard Slawsky contributor

ADA KioskInteractive touchscreens are quickly becoming a key player in the kiosk world. Businesses ranging from fast-casual restaurants to health care facilities and mall makeup stores are finding uses for touchscreen-based kiosks, offering services ranging from food ordering to patient check-in to complexion matching.

kiosk research
Combination of several reports (including Frost & Sullivan, Gartner, and IHL) + our own KI analysis. Hybrid POS checkouts and ATMs are not included unlike most reports..

The latest of the many reports forecasting the growth of the kiosk industry predicts the market will increase at a 9.7 percent compound annual growth rate, reaching $88.3 billion by 2022 from $46.1 billion in 2015. Drivers of that growth include increased customer’s interest towards self service, development in the retail and entertainment industries and innovations in touchscreen display and glass technology. The retail industry holds the lion’s share of the market, with about 40 percent of the overall revenue.

The growth of touchscreen-based self service hasn’t been without its challenges, though. Foremost among them has been the issue of making that technology available to all users, including those with disabilities. Another has been the expanded form factors such as tablets on the low end and large 85-inch touchscreens on the high side.  That’s a shift from the mostly 17-inch and 19-inch screens that dominate the ATM, airline and POS self-checkout precursor worlds.

The compliance conundrum

navbar kiosk
Example of navbar on outdoor ticketing kiosk. Click for full size image. Courtesy Olea Kiosks

The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that about 19 percent of the country’s population, or about 57 million people, have some form of disability. Those include 8.1 million people who have difficulty seeing, including 2 million who were blind or unable to see. In addition, about 7.6 million people have impaired hearing. Roughly 30.6 million have problems walking or climbing stairs, or use a wheelchair, cane, crutches or walker, and 19.9 million people had challenges lifting and grasping. This includes difficulty lifting an object or grasping a pencil (or pressing buttons on a touchscreen interface).

To ensure those with disabilities can enjoy the same rights as everyone, in 1990 Congress passed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The law was designed to afford protections against discrimination similar to those of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the ADA prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in several areas, including employment, transportation, public accommodations, communications and access to state and local government programs and services.

For a business that incorporates kiosks into its operations, that generally means that a kiosk needs to be useable by all of its customers, no matter what their physical challenges may be. In many cases meeting that standard is easier said than done.

Click for full size

“ADA concerns are pretty much the same concerns that one would have for any type of a consumer self-service interactive solution,” said Ron Bowers, senior vice president of business development at Grafton, Wisconsin-based kiosk vendor Frank Mayer & Associates. “Some individual deployments are only adhering to the accessibility-by-wheelchair aspect.”. “Some individual deployments are only adhering to the accessibility-by-wheelchair aspect.”

Unfortunately, those basic accommodations can result in a business overlooking more than 35 million potential customers.

It’s worth noting that a large percentage of customers in wheelchairs also suffer from physical impairment.

Some of the biggest challenges kiosk deployers face is the degree of interpretation that must be applied to some of the regulations.  How many accessible units and what level of accessibility constitutes acceptable access?  Another is new regulations and retrofitting existing units can be problematic, said Craig Keefner, manager for Olea Kiosks.

“Complicating retrofits can be the issue of recertifying for UL,” Keefner said. “One change to the overall machine can require the new configuration to be recertified. If Walmart has to change all of its self-checkouts, that’s a big change.”

To help add clarity to exactly what kiosk deployers must do to be ADA compliant, in mid-September the Architectural and Transportation Barriers and Compliance Board released a final rule for electronic and information technologies used by federal agencies as well as guidelines for customer premises equipment and telecommunications equipment, including kiosks. The Access Board is an independent federal agency devoted to accessibility for people with disabilities.

A sample of the guidelines for kiosks outlined in the Access Board rule

  • In general, devices with a display screen shall be speech-output enabled for full and independent use by individuals with vision impairments.
  • Speech output shall be provided for all information displayed on-screen.
  • Where speech output is required, braille instructions for initiating the speech mode of operation shall be provided.
  • Devices that deliver sound, including required speech output, shall provide volume control and output amplification.
  • At least one mode of operation shall be operable with one hand and shall not require tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist. The force required to activate operable parts shall be 5 pounds (22.2 N) maximum.

The final rule is listed in the Federal Register. Covered organizations must meet compliance standards by Jan. 18, 2018.

Although much of the language in the final rule will likely keep lawyers busy for years to come, there are some guidelines that are easy to interpret. In general, the rules say that the technology with a display screen shall be speech-output enabled for full and independent use by individuals with vision impairments. Input controls shall be operable by touch and tactilely discernible without activation.

Running the risk

Missing out on revenue from millions of customers with disabilities is just one of the pitfalls of not complying with ADA regulations, or at least making every effort to make sense of the standards.

For violations that occurred after April 28, 2014, the maximum civil penalty for a first violation of ADA regulations is $75,000. For a subsequent violation, the maximum civil penalty is $150,000.

In addition, self-service kiosks are increasingly a target for ADA lawsuits. In March 2017, for example, the American Council of the Blind filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York against fast casual restaurant chain Eatsa on behalf of a blind customer. Under Eatsa’s business model, customers order from tablet-based kiosks and pick up their food from a cubicle when it’s ready.

Customer Michael Godino claims he was unable to use a self-order kiosk in an Eatsa to place an order because the kiosks weren’t accessible for blind customers.

“Because the self-service mobile applications, touchscreen tablets, and visually-marked cubbies Eatsa utilizes rely on exclusively visual displays and do not provide any form of audio output or tactile input, Eatsa’s design is entirely inaccessible to blind customers,” according to the lawsuit.

click for full size image

Restaurants aren’t the only businesses open to ADA lawsuits. A proposed class action suit against mall operator Simon Property Group claims a Proactiv skincare products kiosk, located in the Simon-run Miami Mall in Florida, discriminates against blind and visually impaired individuals. The lawsuit argues the Proactiv automated retail kiosk, which uses a touchscreen display, doesn’t offer a way for blind consumers to purchase its products.

“Sighted customers can independently browse, select, and pay for Proactiv brand skincare products at the Miami Mall Proactiv kiosk. However, blind customers are denied the opportunity to participate in this retail service,” the complaint reads. “Moreover, [the defendant] has failed to provide an alternative channel for blind customers to enjoy the retail service provided through the Proactiv kiosk, such as the training of qualified readers to assist visually impaired and blind customers.”

There are about 1,000 Proactiv kiosks in malls in the United States, Canada and Japan.

And just in case a business operator thinks having a staff member on hand to assist disabled customers with using self-service technology, chances are that’s not enough to keep from running afoul of the ADA.

More: consider for wall mount units the ADA requirement for  blind & partially sighted to be able to detect protuberances from walls with their canes. Click for full size

“It depends on the application and if the assistant is as available as the kiosk to provide services,” said Adam Aronson, CEO of San Rafael, Calif.-based Lilitab Tablet Kiosks. Lilitab designs, engineers and markets a range of tablet kiosk products. “If the cashier typically has longer lines than the kiosk, that’s not the same service level,” Aronson said.

While lawsuits against kiosk deployers related to ADA compliance are always a concern, other dangers include the negative publicity from being perceived as a business that is insensitive to the needs of disabled customers. Just a few months ago cable news was filled images of U.S. Capital Police forcibly removing disabled demonstrators from a protest over the Senate’s now-defunct health care bill. Nobody wants their business to be featured in similar reporting.

Of course, things are rarely simple when it comes to government regulations and the ADA is no different. Complicating the landscape is HR 620, the “ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017,” currently making its way through Congress. According to the Center for American Progress the bill, sponsored by Rep. Ted Poe (R-Texas), would require anyone seeking to file a lawsuit against a business for ADA violations to first provide written notice to that business, outlining the provisions of the law that apply to the violation. Business owners would then have 60 days to acknowledge the violation and another 120 days to at least make “substantial progress” towards rectifying it.

Opponents of the bill claim it would gut enforcement of the ADA by allowing businesses to stall the correction of violation for months or years, while those in favor say it would prevent the “drive-by lawsuits” that end up forcing business owners to pay settlements to lawyers who make a career out of filing ADA suits. The ADA bars the awarding of monetary damages in successful lawsuits, but does allow the awarding of “a reasonable attorney’s fee.”

Meeting the challenge

In an effort to sort through the confusion over ADA guidelines, kiosk deployers are taking their own steps to accommodate disabled users.

The easiest steps to take are those that offer access to individuals in wheelchairs or who are otherwise vertically challenged. That includes offering at least one kiosk with an adjustable height or a lower point of access.

VFO project by KioWare and URway. Click for full story.

“Swiveling mounts or adjustable height mounts may assist in accessibility – but they don’t solve the problem just by being available,” said Laura Miller, director of marketing with York, Pa.-based KioWare Kiosk Software.

“The physical placement of the kiosk is just as important as the presence of accessibility features and testing is needed even with the purchase of an accessible kiosk,” she said. “If the path to the kiosk is too narrow to approach head on, for instance, it becomes moot that the kiosk itself is accessible because getting to the kiosk is too challenging or the space too constricted. Vertical and horizontal reach must be considered.”

Ticketing unit for Universal with ADA. Photo courtesy Olea Kiosks. Click for full size.

As mentioned earlier, though, making the kiosk available to those in a wheelchair isn’t enough.

“No longer can you get away with a kiosk just being ‘reachable’,” said Frank Olea, CEO of Cerritos, Calif.-based Olea Kiosks. “Most companies will say their product is ADA compliant, but they fail to mention they’ve only covered a very small spectrum of individuals with disabilities. Sure, someone in a wheelchair can reach the screen, but serving people with disabilities goes far beyond that.”

As demonstrated by the Eatsa scenario, one of the biggest challenges in deploying interactive self-service technology is accommodating visually impaired users. A touchscreen relies heavily on users being able to see the screen, so deployers need to find ways to communicate that information in other ways.

“Without access to speech feedback for on screen contents and a method for determining what item the user is activating, a person who is blind or visually impaired cannot effectively make use of a touchscreen or tablet based kiosk,” said staff at the American Foundation for the Blind.

“For those with low vision, small or ornate fonts are difficult, if not impossible, to read,” AFB officials said. “Low contrast between the foreground and background can also make on-screen and print-labeled items difficult to read.”

In addition, glare on the screen and on any print-labeled areas of the machine can cause readability barriers for people with low vision, the AFB said.

“What I advise people to do is to recreate a version of the kiosk software that can be used by people with visual problems,” said Mike James, CEO of Washington D.C.-based Kiosk Group Inc.

“Information can be presented in large text and contrasting colors for people who are marginally blind, and to have a system for audio feedback for those who are completely blind,” James said. Those prompts can be used in conjunction with Braille keyboards to assist with navigation.

Storm Nav-Pad. Click for full size image

Accommodating users with hand mobility issues is a concern as well. An ‘Automated Passport Solution’ Olea built for deployment in the Dallas Fort Worth Airport incorporates the Nav-Pad, a keypad designed by London-based Storm Interface that provides accessibility to a kiosk’s functions for those with physical or sensory impairments. The APS kiosk shortens the clearance process for international travelers by collecting biographical and passport information from passengers before they are seen by a customs officer.

audio nav ada device
Audio navigation device. Click for full size. Courtesy Storm Interface

The Nav-Pad, developed in partnership with the Trace Research & Development Center, was originally designed for use in military and industrial applications where the user might be wearing heavy gloves. One of the pioneers in the space, Storm Interface also offers the Audio-Nav Keypad, an assistive USB device offering menu navigation by means of audio direction.

The work continues

As ADA compliance becomes a bigger and bigger issue for hardware manufacturers, software developers and kiosk deployers, a variety of industry groups are working to develop solutions that can meet the needs of disabled users.

The Kiosk Industry Association, for example, has formed an ADA working group  and committee expressly for ADA to try and standardize guidelines for the industry. A big initiative for the association is meeting with the US Access Board directly to help communicate industry information and context to the standards body directly.

Other organizations with ADA initiatives include the Electronic Transactions Association, which has also formed a working group. The ETA represents more than 500 companies worldwide involved in electronic transaction processing products and services, working to influence, monitor and shape the payments industry by providing leadership through education, advocacy and the exchange of information.

“The purpose of the group is to promote compliance and the development and deployment of products and services to help ensure access to the payment system,” said Meghan Cieslak, ETA’s director of communications. “The group is comprised of industry experts, start-ups, as well as ISOs and VARs – all focused on helping disabled Americans access the payment system.”

The Kiosk Industry Association is consulting with the ETA on access initiatives and has also enlisted the assistance of the ATM Industry Association which already has a formal ADA document via EFTA for their members.

It’s also critical for deployers to think about accessibility from the very beginning of a kiosk project. A paper co-authored by Peter Jarvis and Nicky Shaw, both from Storm Interface, along with Robin Spinks from the U.K.’s Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) included the following recommendations:

“Accessibility is most effectively achieved when adopted as a primary system specification,” the group wrote.

“It is most successfully implemented if considered during the concept design process,” they wrote. “Accessibility should be a primary objective during the origination of hardware solutions, application software and content to be delivered.”

In addition, consideration should also be given to the environment in which the system will be installed, they wrote, and that terminals located in public or unsupervised environments will need to survive regular cleaning and sanitization procedures using sprayed liquid disinfectants and other cleaning agents.

Along with providing hardware designed for accessibility, the application or website on the kiosk must be built with more than a cursory nod toward compliance in order to have these other components “work” in a successful and accessible deployment. The kiosk system software can utilize accessibility features and the hardware can provide sound, include keyboards and be height adjustable, but if the application isn’t built with accessibility in mind, or modified to make sure accessibility features are fully integrated, usability and accessibility will suffer for it.

These concerns, and others, are driving the various partnerships on ADA issues.

“It was pretty much a no-brainer for us to go ahead and work together on standardizing,” Keefner said.

“I’ve been really passionate about it and I’ve talked to kiosk manufacturers about binding together to create standards on kiosk design so people who walk up to a kiosk know where to find the audio jack, know where to find the braille keyboard or whatever,” said Kiosk Group’s Mike James. “Those features could be the same for every project.”

Unfortunately, despite the additional clarification on access rules it’s likely that in the short term it’s likely that many compliance issues are likely to be hashed out in court.

“It seems that there are a few people out there who have made it their job to litigate any non-ADA-compliant situations that arise,” Miller said. “This is not exclusive to kiosks, but they have not been completely spared, and while it seems relatively obscure at this point, those individuals looking for violations will likely eventually hit on the existence of kiosks as fodder for their litigious pursuits.”

Resources for kiosks and ADA compliance

ADA Committee and ADA Working Group for Kiosk Association

ADA White Paper on Kiosk Industry

Access Board final rule for information and communication technology

Trace Research and Development

National Council on Disability Report

Interactive Accessibility   – accessibility consulting firm

Digital Business kiosk consultants

COMMENTS

Richard and Craig

I wanted to congratulate you both on an excellent and  informative article. Thank you for helping to bring the importance of ADA and ACAA mandates to the attention of the Kiosk Industry and to those agencies deploying and operating ICT in public environments. Thanks also for recognizing Storm Interface in the text of the article and for including some of those images showing deployed installations. We are constantly working to improve and add to the range of accessibility and assistive technology products available to kiosk designers. There are some exciting new developments in process which will help to deliver the “multi-modal” methods of system interface that are widely predicted to be the next big step in system accessibility. The priority will be to ensure our partners in the kiosk industry are kept aware of and fully supported in the deployment of Assistive Technology Products (ATP).

Hopefully your article will receive the recognition it deserves and I will have an opportunity to work with you both to maintain awareness of accessibility issues within the kiosk industry.

Best Regards

Peter Jarvis
Senior Executive VP

Supreme Court Rejects Coca-Cola Case on Vending Machine ADA Compliance

The case, titled Magee v. Coca-Cola Refreshments USA, was brought by Emmett Magee, a blind man from Louisiana who invoked the ADA in suing Coca Cola because its glass-front vending machines made it impossible for him to know what product he was choosing and at what price. He was thwarted buying soda from vending machines at a hospital and a bus station.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit turned away his claim, ruling that vending machines are “not a physical place open to public access” and therefore don’t fit the definition of “public accommodations” that are required to abide by the ADA. It also said that the hospital and the bus stations were public accommodations and “may very well” bear some responsibility to make vending machines on their premises accessible to the disabled.

Source: www.law.com