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Nasscom Foundation calls for efforts to promote ‘Digital Accessibility’

30 October 2013

OneWorld South Asia

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The roundtable was designed to create awareness about ‘Digital Accessibility’ and discuss the business case for accessible software, apps and websites.

Bangalore: In an effort to further strengthen its vision to mainstream employment of Persons with Disabilities and making ICT accessible to all, NASSCOM Foundation hosted a Roundtable session - “Promoting Accessible Products-Bit-by-Bit” at the recently concluded NASSCOM Product Conclave.

The roundtable was designed to create awareness about ‘Digital Accessibility’ and discuss the business case for accessible software, apps and websites. The discussions at the roundtable also demonstrated the importance of addressing the access barriers to Persons with Disabilities and developing technology that can be accessed by all including Persons with Disabilities.

Speaking at this roundtable was a panel of esteemed speakers including Cheryl Aranha (Head Accessibility- Intuit), Meghashyam Karanam (Lead Product Marketing Manager -Microsoft Corp), Sheenam Ohrie (Vice President and Head, Diversity & Inclusion -SAP Labs India) and Shilpi Kapoor (Founder - BarrierBreak Technologies).

Rita Soni, CEO NASSCOM Foundation said, “The Foundation has several initiatives to sensitize the IT-BPM industry on the business and the social case for inclusion of Persons with Disabilities. This session, the first with the NASSCOM Product Conclave, was designed to encourage software development companies to design for accessibility as a matter of normal business. Besides this being an opportunity to demonstrate Business Responsibility, it is an avenue with direct business benefits: increased customer reach and loyalty, proactive regulatory approach and Search Engine Optimization.The industry has come a long way in demonstrating inclusive practices though a lot more has to be done.‎”

Nasscom Foundation’s Disability Initiative with continuous support from NASSCOM’s Diversity and Inclusion Initiative and Wadhwani Foundation is mainstreaming the employment of Persons with Disabilities in the IT-BPM industry. It motivates companies to modify their HR policies, create barrier-free work environments, generate employment opportunities for Persons with Disabilities, hire from this untapped pool of resources and develop innovative assistive tools and technologies.

The Foundation along with the industry, NGOs, training and educational institutions and government bodies, is building a sustainable ecosystem that supports holistic inclusion of Persons with Disabilities. 

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