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Citizens Online launch 'Fix the Web' campaign

Six million disabled and older web users can't see 80% of sites properly

More than six million disabled and older Brits are excluded from using around 80 percent of websites, says Citizens Online.

According to the organisation, disabled and older users encounter problems such as sites that incompatible with screen readers, have text that is difficult to read or even prevent non-mouse users from accessing the site.

In a bid to tackle the issue, Citizens Online has launched the Fix the Web scheme, which is being funded by Nominet Trust.

The scheme is hoping to attract 10,000 volunteers who will liaise with website owners, alerting them to the problems on their site and pointing them in the right direction if they require further support to change the site.

Meanwhile, the organisation is also urging web users facing accessibility issues to report any sites that create problems. Website can be reported either via the Fix the Web website, or via micro-blogging service Twitter and email.

Citizens Online hopes that with both an increase in reporting and volunteers, the Fix the Web scheme will be able to ensure 250,000 websites can be accessed by disabled and older web users in the next two years.

"I believe many techies would be horrified to think that the web they love so much is excluding people. I firmly believe that this isn't a problem disabled people should have to deal with on their own," said Dr Gail Bradbrook of Citizens Online.

"We expect to see ramps, extra wide doorways and adapted toilet facilities, but what about the equivalent online? Do we consider that websites might need their own virtual ramps?"

See also: 53% of firms haven't checked their website's appearance on a mobile

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