Accessibility Statement for Access NI

This page explains how accessible the nidirect Access NI service is and what is being done to improve accessibility.

Accessibility statement

This service is part of the wider nidirect website. There is a separate accessibility statement available for the main NI direct website.

This page only contains information about the nidirect AccessNI Service.

This statement applies to the Access NI service web based application which is accessible via the www.nidirect.gov.uk website.

This application is run by the Department of Justice. It is designed to be used by as many people as possible. The text should be clear and simple to understand.

When accessing the application through the web browser, you should be able to:

  • zoom in up to 300 per cent without problems
  • navigate most of the application using just a keyboard
  • navigate most of the application using speech recognition software
  • use most of the application using a screen reader (including the most recent versions of JAWS, NVDA and Voice Over)

How accessible this web application is

Parts of this web application are not fully accessible. For example:

  • images and Icons within the Employee portal do not have suitable alternative text to ensure screen reader users understand what they are trying to convey
  • there are no landmark tags on any pages
  • on the landing page whilst the links within lists on the landing page are only distinguished by colour from normal text, they do exist in their own grouping, and do not exist in between other surrounding text
  • there are many cases throughout the customer and employee portal where the colour contrast between the text and the background is not high enough, making it difficult for some users to read
  • when the screens are resized, the table loses all readability. Headings overlap, and the columns resize to one or two characters width. This is difficult for all users to read
  • the border colour that form elements receive when they are ‘focussed’ upon does not pass colour contrast accessibility checks for user interface components. User interface components require a contrast of 3:1
  • there is no ‘skip to content’ option within any page. The user will have to tab through all the navigation before reaching the main content. This skip link should be the first element focusable on a page and should skip repeated content
  • as described in 2.1.1 Keyboard, users are able to tab into fields which are hidden from view unless a user expands the accordion they are within
  • each element must contain text or an image with an alt attribute
  • it is recommended to utilise aria-invalid on the erroneous fields so that the state can be immediately identified
  • labels or instructions are provided when content requires user input

Feedback and contact information

If you need information in a different format contact us by either:

  • calling the NI Direct Contact Centre who handle calls on behalf of the Access NI  Service on 0300 200 7888
  • by email at  ani@accessni.gov.uk

and advise us of:

  • the web address (URL) of the content
  • your name and email address
  • the format you need  

Reporting accessibility problems

We are always looking to improve accessibility of this app and are currently carrying out an audit to highlight improvements. If you find that we are not meeting accessibility requirements contact us by calling the contact centre on 0300 200 7888 and we will investigate the issue or email ani@accessni.gov.uk.

Enforcement procedure

The Equality Commission for Northern Ireland (ECNI) is responsible for enforcing the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018 (the ‘accessibility regulations’) in Northern Ireland.

If you’re not happy with how we respond to your complaint, contact the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland (ECNI).

Technical information about this web apps accessibility

nidirect is committed to making its website and apps accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.

Compliance Status

The Access NI Disclosure system does not currently meet level A (and therefore neither AA nor AAA).

Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations    

The content that is not accessible is outlined below with details of:

  • the accessibility problem(s)
  • where it fails the success criteria

Perceivable

Level A - 1.1.1 Non Text Content. There are not many images or icons used through the employee portal. However, those which are used do not have suitable alternative text to ensure screen reader users understand what they are trying to convey.

Level A - 1.3.1 Info and relationships. There are no landmark tags on any pages. This can help users of assistive technology navigate a page by identifying which content block has the “main” content within it. Add tags to help user’s identity which is the main content.

Level AA - 1.4.3 Contrast (minimum).  There are many cases throughout the customer and employee portal where the colour contrast between the text and the background is not high enough, making it difficult for some users to read.

Level AA 1.4.10 Reflow.  When the screens are resized, the table loses all readability. Headings overlap, and the columns resize to one or two characters width. This is difficult for all users to read.

Level AA - 1.4.11 Non-text contrast (added in WCAG 2.1). The border colour that form elements receive when they are ‘focussed’ upon does not pass colour contrast accessibility checks for user interface components. User interface components require a contrast of 3:1.

Operable

Level A - 2.4.1 Bypass blocks. There is no ‘skip to content’ option within any page. The user will have to tab through all the navigation before reaching the main content. This skip link should be the first element focusable on a page and should skip repeated content.  

Level A - 2.4.3 Focus Order. As described in 2.1.1 Keyboard, users are able to tab into fields which are hidden from view unless a user expands the accordion they are within.

Level A - 2.4.4 Link purpose (in context).  A link name allows screen readers to voice what the link does. If there is no alternative text, screen readers have nothing to read, so read out the URL instead which is often not very descriptive.

Understandable

Level A - 3.3.1 Error identification. It is recommended to utilise aria-invalid on the erroneous fields so that the state can be immediately identified. It is also required to inform all users immediately that an error has occurred on the page. This can be done by providing role=”alert” to the error summary and aria-atomic=”true”. By also updating the page’s

Level A - 3.3.2 Labels or instructions. Labels or instructions are provided when content requires user input.

Robust

Level A 4.1.2 - Name, role, value.  Throughout the site, review and ensure that each element contains text or images with alt text. A link name allows screen readers to voice what the link does. If there is no alt text, screen readers have nothing to read, so read out the URL instead which is not very descriptive.

Level AA (Added in WCAG 2.1) 4.1.3 Status messages.  If an important status message is presented and focus is not set to that message, the message must be announced to screen reader users, typically via an ARIA alert or live region.

Disproportionate burden

Not applicable.

Content that’s not within the scope of the accessibility regulations

As a web application published before 23 September 2018, we are required to comply with the web accessibility regulations from 23 September 2020.

PDFs and other documents

Many documents are non-accessible in a number of ways including missing text alternatives and missing document structure.

The accessibility regulations do not require us to fix PDFs or other documents published before 23 September 2018 if they’re not essential to providing our services.

Any new PDFs or other documents we publish will meet the required accessibility standards.

How we tested this web application

This web application was and is currently being tested for compliance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.1 level A and level AA, and these tests have been carried out externally and independently.

We used the Website Accessibility Conformance Evaluation Methodology (WCAG-EM) approach to deciding on a sample of pages to test.

What we’re doing to improve accessibility

We are currently working towards developing a timeline of when we plan to fix these issues and this will be made available once completed.   

This statement was prepared on 15 October 2020. It was last updated on 15 October 2020.

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What to do next

Comments or queries about angling can be emailed to anglingcorrespondence@daera-ni.gov.uk 

What to do next

If you have a comment or query about benefits, you will need to contact the government department or agency which handles that benefit.  Contacts for common benefits are listed below.

Carer's Allowance

Call 0800 587 0912
Email 
dcs.incomingpostteamdhc2@nissa.gsi.gov.uk

Discretionary support / Short-term benefit advance

Call 0800 587 2750 
Email 
customerservice.unit@communities-ni.gov.uk

Disability Living Allowance

Call 0800 587 0912 
Email dcs.incomingpostteamdhc2@nissa.gsi.gov.uk

Employment and Support Allowance

Call 0800 587 1377

Jobseeker’s Allowance

Contact your local Jobs & Benefits office

Personal Independence Payment

Call 0800 587 0932

If your query is about another benefit, select ‘Other’ from the drop-down menu above.

What to do next

Comments or queries about the Blue Badge scheme can be emailed to bluebadges@infrastructure-ni.gov.uk or you can also call 0300 200 7818.

What to do next

For queries or advice about careers, contact the Careers Service.

What to do next

For queries or advice about Child Maintenance, contact the Child Maintenance Service.

What to do next

For queries or advice about claiming compensation due to a road problem, contact DFI Roads claim unit.

What to do next

For queries or advice about criminal record checks, email ani@accessni.gov.uk

What to do next

Application and payment queries can be emailed to ema_ni@slc.co.uk

What to do next

For queries or advice about employment rights, contact the Labour Relations Agency.

What to do next

For queries or advice about birth, death, marriage and civil partnership certificates and research, contact the General Register Office Northern Ireland (GRONI) by email gro_nisra@finance-ni.gov.uk

What to do next

For queries about:

If your query is about another topic, select ‘Other’ from the drop-down menu above.

What to do next

For queries or advice about passports, contact HM Passport Office.

What to do next

For queries or advice about Penalty Charge Notices (PCNs), including parking tickets and bus lane PCNs, email dcu@infrastructure-ni.gov.uk

What to do next

For queries or advice about pensions, contact the Northern Ireland Pension Centre.

What to do next

If you wish to report a problem with a road or street you can do so online in this section.

If you wish to check on a problem or fault you have already reported, contact DfI Roads.

What to do next

For queries or advice about historical, social or cultural records relating to Northern Ireland, use the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI) enquiry service.

What to do next

For queries or advice about rates, email:
rating@lpsni.gov.uk

For queries or advice about property valuation, email:
valuation@lpsni.gov.uk

For queries or advice about land registry, email:
CustomerInformation.LandRegistration@finance-ni.gov.uk

For mapping queries, email:
Mapping.Helpdesk@finance-ni.gov.uk

What to do next

For queries or advice about  60+ and Senior Citizen SmartPasses (which can be used to get concessionary travel on public transport), contact Smartpass - Translink.