Stark Lab introduces Stark for Chrome as Ontario’s AODA kicks in

The June 30 Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) deadline has come and gone, leaving many organizations scrambling to make their online presence more accessible.

Issues range from limited keyboard-only usage, unclearly labelled forms and difficult to read PDFs, as well as the exclusion of image descriptions for the visually impaired. With over 6 million Canadians considered disabled, this marks a significant challenge in need of a solution.

Web accessibility plug-in Stark, which is already integrated into platforms like Figma, Sketch, and Adobe XD, recently launched Stark for Google Chrome. The browser extension allows developers to integrate accessibility considerations into their sites with tools in real-time. 

Specifically, Stark’s extension will help developers to ensure that their websites meet the AA and AAA WCAG 2.0 standards and that they are compliant with AODA regulations. Failure to comply with these standards could result in fines of up to $100,000 per day, giving developers plenty of incentive to get their websites up to snuff.

Stark for Chrome is available for both paid and free users. In a blog post, Stark hinted at additional features to come.

“We know accessibility goes beyond colours, but colour is universal and one of the greatest on-ramps to the world of access. It’s what bridges disciplines, and in a world where silos are the catalyst for a lack of accessibility education and execution in the product development process, we’re all for easy on-ramps,” the post read. “In the same way we’re quickly expanding the suite of tools provided in design software, we’ll also be adding more features and improvements in Chrome in the very near future.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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