EN 301 549 | Digital Accessibility Standards

EN 301 549 (European Union)

EN 301 549 is the European Union’s standard that lays out accessibility requirements for information and communications technology (ICT) used in public works/governmental works in countries belonging to the European Union. Like Section 508 in the United States, the application of EN 301 549  is broad; it lays out requirements for both physical and digital technology. Sections 9-11, which cover web content, non-web documents, and software have been officially tied to WCAG 2.1 since September of 2018, when the official European Standards Organizations CEN, CENELEC, and ETSI published an updated version of the standards that directly aligned the EN 301 549 standards for web content, non-web documents, and software with WCAG 2.1.

Who has to comply?

Again like Section 508 in the United States, EN 301 549 applies primarily to government entities and to contractors who produce information and communications technologies for government entities.

What happens if I don’t comply? And who enforces it?
As of April 2020, EN 301 549 is a voluntary standard. There is currently no requirement for compliance and no enforcement mechanisms have been set up.

What do I have to do to comply?

In order to comply with EN 301 549, websites, digital documents, and other digital products must meet WCAG 2.1 Level AA.

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