For the over 12 million adults who are visually impaired or blind, maintaining financial independence and personal banking can be a challenge, especially if websites are not fully accessible or compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Moreover, according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, more than 60 percent of people with disabilities ages 25-64 have no savings for unexpected expenses to turn to in a time of crisis.
All Americans deserve equal access to online and mobile payment services, and to be empowered by the digital tools offered to plan, save, and thrive in today's economy. That is why the technology team at the Miami Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired set out to audit these websites for accessibility.
This is not the first time Miami Lighthouse leverages their website accessibility analysis tool, the ADA Compliance Meter, for the benefit of the American people. In 2019, ahead of the presidential primary election, Miami Lighthouse's all-blind expert accessibility team uncovered shocking news: none of the websites of the presidential candidates were fully accessible and ADA Compliant, shutting out 60 million voters living with a disability from the information needed to learn more about the potential next president.
Then, in the wake of COVID-19 and a world of social distancing, Miami Lighthouse wanted to ensure the millions of blind and visually impaired Americans could access their vital food deliveries. Reviewing top supermarkets and grocery delivery apps, Miami Lighthouse found the majority of the websites scored higher than those of the 2020 Presidential candidates, but the majority were still missing an accessibility statement to inform and support those with disabilities when needed.
Now, especially as the United States faces economic uncertainty, it is vital for all Americans to be informed of their available financial management services. Miami Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually impaired has analyzed six digital money management websites and applications* to ensure there is financial transparency for all Americans. Under Title III in the ADA, all websites should provide equal access to information for people with disabilities, including the blind and visually impaired. This means access to digital and online media in addition to physical spaces.
Below is a full report of our findings and methodology.
|Online Payment Service
An assessment was conducted by the Miami Lighthouse for the blind on January 26, 2023. The sample consisted of the top six online and mobile payment services. Websites and apps were assessed for accessibility to persons using assistive technology software such as screen readers. Websites and apps were ranked in order of accessibility. The process consisted of analyzing each website using the latest assistive technology screen reading software such as JAWS for Windows and the World-Wide Consortium (WC3) Website Accessibility Content Guidelines (WCAG v2.0/2.1) subset of 10 criteria. The review was conducted by the CEO of Miami Lighthouse and her IT experts, all of whom are blind. Scoring was based on the following criteria and scale:
We used a subset of the most common criteria from WCAG v2.0/2.1. The weighting scale numbers assigned to each criteria were evaluated on a 50 percent scale majority. Therefore, as an example using the criteria of "Is website organized for ease of navigation" using our best knowledge and experience with assistive technology software, if more than half of the individual pages examined on a particular website exceeded 50 percent of the specified criteria such as if the pages contained proper region divisions for page organization, the weight score would be a 3 for mostly accessible. If it fell below half of the individual pages, then the score would be a 2 for somewhat accessible.
In addition, if the specific criteria could not be verified using assistive technology software, then the score for that particular criteria would be a 1 for not accessible and if the criteria was fully verified using the assistive technology software throughout all pages on a site, then the score would be a 4 for fully accessible.
All online payment services should ensure their websites and apps are fully ADA compliant and immediately include an accessibility statement and accessibility widget on their websites and apps. In particular, the accessibility statement should reinforce their commitment to website accessibility and should provide a phone number and live email address for anyone needing assistance navigating the website.
Since 1930, Miami Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired, an independent organization, has been Florida's premier rehabilitation organization serving the blind. The mission of the Miami Lighthouse is to provide vision rehabilitation and eye health services that promote education and independence, to collaborate with and train professionals and to conduct research in related fields. Miami lighthouse serves over 22,000 blind and visually impaired people of all ages each year.
For more information, please contact Virginia Jacko, President and Chief Executive Officer at (305) 856-4176 or email@example.com.
Miami Lighthouse is AER accredited distinguishing that an agency or school operates at the highest level of quality and is positioned to generate the outcomes needed by the clients.
Miami Lighthouse received the coveted Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce 2023 Nonprofit Business Innovative Excellence NOVO Award with an organizational budget of $2 million and above.
Miami Lighthouse ranks among the elite 1% of U.S. nonprofits having earned 13 consecutive 4-star ratings from Charity Navigator, the nation's premier independent nonprofit evaluator. Receiving such a distinction reflects our sound fiscal management, responsible use of donor dollars, and financial strength.
Early Intervention Blind Babies Program Named the Children's Trust 2016 Program of the Year. This most prestigious award recognizes this Early Intervention Program, in particular, for including parents as teachers.
Miami Lighthouse Learning Center for Children™ is a Florida gold seal and nationally Accredited Professional Preschool Learning Environment (APPLE)
Miami Lighthouse was recognized at the 2015 Florida Blue Foundation Sapphire Awards luncheon as an organization that has demonstrated excellence and innovation in community health.
Miami Lighthouse received the prestigious 2015 Beacon Award in Education at the 13th Annual Beacon Council Awards.
Miami Lighthouse is a two-time Charity Partner (2013 and 2014) of the Marlins Foundation and a 2017 Major League Baseball All-Star Game Legacy Partner. Our Florida Heiken Children's Vision Program has received over $300,000 in charitable donations through these partnerships.
Miami Lighthouse received the prestigious 2008 Concern Award from Health Foundation of South Florida.
Miami Lighthouse received a Silver medal at the 2016 Miami Today Gold Medal Awards Ceremony.
Miami Lighthouse named "Best of Miami" Charity 2017 by the New Times.
Miami Lighthouse received United Homecare's 2012 Thelma Gibson Community Service Award at the 18th Annual Claude Pepper Memorial Awards Ceremony.
Miami Lighthouse received the prestigious South Florida Business Journal 2011 Excellence in Health Care Award in the Community Outreach category.
Miami Lighthouse honored by being named the recipient of the Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce 2010 Non-Profit Business Diamond Award.
Miami Lighthouse received the prestigious 2020 award for "Best in Nonprofit" campaign by PRWeek referred to as the "Oscars of the PR industry".
Miami Lighthouse is proud to be a strategic partner with ABLE United, Florida's disability savings program, to learn more visit www.ableunited.com