All public sector organisations have a duty to provide accessible and inclusive communications, including websites, as part of the requirement for reasonable adjustments outlined by The Equality Act (2010).
There are some great examples of how our different public services in the UK use different accessible and inclusive communications to include our diverse community.
For example, did you know about the Police Enhanced Access Line (PEAL) launched by Cambridgeshire Constabulary for people who have difficulties with telephone communications?
The service is for people who may benefit from additional support when contacting the police and it gives people who pre-register direct access to a highly trained police call taker if they ever need to contact the constabulary.
Once registered, anyone calling the number will be connected directly to a specially trained police call taker. This can reduce the time they spend waiting to speak to an operator and helps minimise any pain or discomfort they may have when holding a telephone.
The communications for public sector organisations also have to cater for people from a wide range of cultural, ethnic and racial backgrounds.
This includes people who speak English as a second language. Approximately 8% of UK population speak English as second language and one in five people in London fall into this category. And the top four languages spoken in the UK after English are Welsh, Polish, Urdu and Panjabi (Punjabi).
That’s why it’s crucial to provide web access for diverse communities who speak these languages and others by using accessibility software like Recite Me, which can translate any web content into over 100 languages.
Not only can people from these communities opt to translate any written content on the two constabulary’s websites into their preferred language, they can also opt to have it read it out aloud to them in that language.