Accessibility following the Design for All principles

Published: 15 December 2009

Policies & Issues: Internal Market - Compliance, Standards & Enforcement

Orgalime supports the idea that accessibility can be stimulated through raising company awareness with European guidelines on best practices for the inclusion of accessibility provisions in standards applicable to the design of engineering products where suitable.

Orgalime believes that the development of standards and their use in product design should stay a business-driven process free from bureaucratic validation procedures.  Therefore Orgalime calls on the European Commission to refrain from including in its mandate to the European standards organisations the drafting of a “new standard that describes how the goods manufacturing industry in its processes can consider accessibility following Design for all principles” (DfA) for two reasons:

1. DfA principles could conflict with the “fit for purpose” principle and the “intended use” principle that apply to the safe design of products covered by existing directives;

2. Freedom of design and innovation capability are better ways to bridge adequately each “usability gap”, instead of setting a one-size fits all approach in ‘certifiable’ standards.

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