Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, 29 U.S.C. §794(d).
On August 7, 1998, President Clinton signed into law the Rehabilitation Act Amendments of 1998 which covers access to federally funded programs and services. The law strengthens section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act and requires access to electronic and information technology provided by the Federal government. The law applies to all Federal agencies when they develop, procure, maintain, or use electronic and information technology. Federal agencies must ensure that this technology is accessible to employees and members of the public with disabilities to the extent it does not pose an "undue burden." Section 508 speaks to various means for disseminating information, including computers, software, and electronic office equipment. It applies to, but is not solely focused on, Federal pages on the Internet or the World Wide Web. It does not apply to web pages of private industry.
The Access Board is responsible for developing accessibility standards for such technology for incorporation into regulations that govern Federal procurement practices. The net result will be that Federal agencies must purchase electronic and information technology that is accessible except where it would cause an "undue burden." The law also provides a complaint process under which complaints concerning access to technology will be investigated by the responsible Federal agency.
- The Rehabilitation Act Amendments (Section 508) (full-text).