Building a Stronger Accessibility Community in Europe (EU) and the United Kingdom (UK)

By admin
Building a Stronger

Accessibility Community
ORG

in

Europe
LOC

(

EU
ORG

) and

the United Kingdom
GPE

(

UK
GPE

)

The best way to help someone in need is to extend a hand. You don’t get into the ditch with them. Sometimes, as an accessibility practitioner, the best way to help your organization is to brainstorm with other practitioners to strengthen the entire community. Learn from their mistakes. Capitalize on their successes.


AbilityNet
ORG

and

Deque
ORG

recently partnered up to provide a confidential and open environment where

UK
GPE

and

EU
ORG

practitioners could gather together to learn each others’ successes—and avoid their missteps. To leverage “lessons learned” to fast track programs while not reinventing the wheel.

Recently,

two
CARDINAL

small cohorts of digital accessibility thought leaders were brought together as an opportunity to meet their colleagues to discuss the present landscape and future of accessibility. These passionate professionals met to share information about their efforts in the accessibility community and collective experiences. They represented different industries such as finance, retail and key sectors such as government agencies. All have a vested interest in an accessible digital future.


Day 1
DATE

attendees meeting in front of

Google
ORG

’s

London Office
ORG

entrance: left-to-right:

Mark Walker
PERSON



AbilityNet
ORG

,

Heather Hepburn
PERSON



SkyScanner
ORG

,

Matthew Johnston
PERSON



Thoughtworks
ORG

,

Steve Harris
PERSON



Deque
PERSON

,

Lee Crooks
PERSON



KPMG
ORG

,

Preety Kumar
PERSON



Deque
ORG

,

Arnaud Ramgoolam
PERSON



KPMG
ORG

,

Bryn Anderson
PERSON



Sainsbury
ORG

’s,

Ron Beenen
PERSON



Deque
PERSON

,

David Musson
PERSON



LSEG
ORG

,

Adi Latif
PERSON



AbilityNet
ORG

,

Ronise Nepomuceno
PERSON



BT
ORG

, and

Matthew Luken
PERSON



Deque
PERSON

.

“Everyone in attendance is part of the ‘choir.’ We don’t need to preach about the importance of digital accessibility to you as you are already living the challenges and successes of your own program”, said

Mark Walker
PERSON

,

AbilityNet
ORG

’s

Head of Marketing and Portfolio
ORG

, at the inaugural session held in

London
GPE


this past June
DATE

. “What you need to be able to do is to ask openly if anyone else has encountered a similar challenge as your own and what they did about it. This is a session for you – the choir.”

The

two
CARDINAL

cohorts spent

the morning
TIME

in round table discussions led by Mr.

Walker
PERSON

and Ms.

Kumar
PERSON

. Teams went on a tour of

Google
ORG

’s

Accessibility Discover Centre
ORG

led by

Christopher Patnoe
PERSON

in

the afternoon
TIME

.

“Through the act of sharing our experiences, we gain a deeper understanding of the problems and challenges each of us is facing…but most importantly, we can offer help through ideas and collaboration. By sharing what worked and what didn’t work, we build on each others’ success or save ourselves time by not attempting something that has already failed somewhere else.” offered

Preety Kumar
PERSON

, CEO

Deque
PERSON

, in her opening remarks.


Day 2
DATE

attendees meeting in front of

Google
ORG

’s

London Office
ORG

entrance: left-to-right:

Zoe Portlock
PERSON



Hargreaves Lansdown
PERSON

,

Ron Beenen
PERSON



Deque
PERSON

,

John Carter
PERSON



KPMG
ORG

,

Neil Eustice
PERSON



KMPG
PERSON

,

Becky Brindley
PERSON



Natwest
ORG

,

Eyal Yovel
PERSON



Sauce Labs
ORG


, Dónal Rice
PERSON



National Disability Authority
ORG

Ireland,

Brian Grellermann
PERSON



Aviva
GPE

,

Mark Rossiter
PERSON



AXA
ORG

,

Steve Harris
PERSON



Deque
PERSON

,

Chris Bush
PERSON



Nexer Digital
PERSON

,

Martin Rafferty
PERSON

-Deloitte, and

Karl Goldstraw
PERSON

– Hargreaves

Lansdown
PERSON

.

From the attendees:

“Celebrate the small successes”, said

Becks Brindley
PERSON

,

Digital Accessibility
ORG

lead from

NatWest
ORG

after

day 1
DATE

. “It’s progress over perfection.” Listen to day 1 highlights:

After

Day 2
DATE

,

Heather Hepburn
PERSON

, Accessibility Lead from

Skyscanner
ORG

said: “Once you’ve trained once, it’s not over. You have to keep sharing knowledge and keep on talking about it all the time.” Listen to day 2 highlights:

This community building initiative will grow with the next session to be held in

London
GPE

on

October 17th and
DATE

18th with a larger and more diverse group of attendees. In addition to more round table discussions, the attendees will discuss metrics and measurements.

The insights gathered from these events will be used to help plan meaningful breakout sessions for

Techshare Pro
ORG

to be held online and in-person in

London
GPE


November 14–15
DATE

,

2023
DATE

and

Deque
ORG

’s axe-con

2024
DATE

, a free virtual conference, to be held

February 20–22, 2024
DATE

.

For more information, reach out to

Ron Beenen
PERSON

,

Deque Director
PERSON

of

Business Development Europe
ORG

.

*Video and photography by

Eric van Nieuwland
PERSON

.