Accessibility statement

This accessibility statement applies to the website: www.manchester.gov.uk, which is managed by Manchester City Council.

We want as many people as possible to be able to use the site, so have designed it so that it lets you edit your preferred settings, with options to:

  • change colours, contrast levels and fonts
  • zoom in up to 400% without the text spilling off the screen
  • navigate most of the website using just a keyboard
  • navigate most of the website using speech recognition software
  • listen to most of the website using a screen reader (including the most recent versions of JAWS, NVDA and VoiceOver)

See how you can adapt the website to meet your needs.

AbilityNet canhelp you to make your device easier to use if you have a disability.

Reachdeck (Browselaoud)

We use Reachdeck (Browsealoud) to provide speech, reading and translation support to our website. it works by reading our website content out loud in a natural sounding voice. It can translate our web pages into 99 languages, and read the content aloud in 40 of the most commonly spoken languages in the world. In addition, Reachdeck (Browsealoud) can:

  • magnify text on-screen to help users with visual impairments
  • convert text to audio files using an MP3 generator for offline listening
  • block on-screen clutter using a screen mask, to let readers focus on the text being read
  • remove ads and other distracting content using a web page simplifier for easier reading
  • read PDF documents aloud

Accessibility issues with Reachdeck (Browsealoud)

Issues at 400% zoom:

  • Some icons in the menu are partially cut off
  • On first visit to our site the cookie banner can obscure the toolbar

Issues at 200% and 400% zoom:

  • When you have both the translate page and MP3 Maker options on, you cannot scroll down far enough in order to see the generate button.
  • On the settings page, some drop down fields are partially cut off.
  • When choosing the simplify option, the options that appear at the top of the screen overlap.
  • When choosing an option that opens information below the toolbar such as the question mark icon or picture dictionary, then the toolbar covers the entire page and you cannot access the options to close it again

How accessible this website is

We know that some elements of this website are not fully accessible:

  • you cannot modify the line height or spacing of text
  • many older PDF documents are not fully accessible to screen reader software
  • some of our online forms are difficult to navigate using just a keyboard
  • you cannot skip to the main content when using a screen reader
  • Maps (and the information displayed on them) are not picked up in full by assistive technology for example key elements such as magnification and points of interest.
  • live video streams do not have sub-titles

Feedback and contact information

If you would like to comment on the accessibility of this website, or request any of the information in a different format, such as accessible PDF, large print, easy read, audio recording or braille, please email webfeedback@manchester.gov.uk.

We'll get back to you within 14 days.

Reporting accessibility problems with this website

We're always looking to improve the accessibility of this website: if you have any problems that aren't already mentioned, or you think we're not meeting accessibility requirements, email us at webfeedback@manchester.gov.uk.

Enforcement procedure

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is responsible for enforcing the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018 (the accessibility regulations). If you've made a formal complaint to us about our websites accessibility, and aren't happy with our response, contact the Equality Advisory and Support Service.

Contacting us by phone or visiting us in person

We provide a text relay service for people with hearing impairment or speech impediment. The number is 0161 234 3760

If you're visiting the Customer Service Centre in the Town Hall Extension (or any other of our buildings across the city) to make an enquiry, pay a bill or attend an interview or a meeting, please let the person you're meeting know if you need to use an audio induction loop. Many of our facilities have them, at the main entrance or reception are, or inside some of the offices and meeting rooms.

British Sign Language users can call us using SignVideo Web Access, an online sign language interpreting service, from their own home for free.

Alternatively, find out how to arrange an interpreter or translation for your visit.

Technical information about this websites accessibility

Manchester City Council is committed to making it's website accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.

Compliance status

This website is partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.1 AA standard, due to the non-compliances and exemptions listed below.

Non-accessible content

The content listed below is non-accessible for the following reasons.

Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations


Older images

  • Images uploaded to the site before 2018 may not have alt tags or captions. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.1.1 (non-text content).
  • We will correct insufficient or needed alt-text over time as we review sections of the site.When we publish new content we’ll make sure our use of images meets accessibility standards.

Older downloads / PDFs

  • Downloads and PDFs uploaded to the site before 2018 may not be accessible. We will correct over time as we review sections of the site. When we publish new content.;

Selective headings

  • Some web page headings don't cascade inside the features on the page. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 2.4.10 (Section Headings).
  • A number of updates are coming to our site by the end of this year, and we expect the updates to address these issues.

Select link text

  • Some pages use the same link text more than once, but each goes to a different URL. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 2.4.4 Link Purpose (In Context)
  • Any link or text that is flagged to us will be looked into and assessed against collected user data.

Final payment screens

  • The Civica payment page is not responsive on mobile devices.
  • This fails WCAG 2.1 Success Criterion 1.4.8 (Visual Presentation).
  • We are working alongside external software developers to address this issue. We have been assured that the upcoming updates will fix this. Users who experience issues with forms can find the specific service contact email listed on the page to request offline versions of some forms.

Forms

  • There is a 20 minute limit to complete a form but no warning when this time is getting near, or way to extend the time limit.
  • The same title displays on each of every form, not indicating where the user is on the form.

This is a technical limitation of our website, we will look into fixing this at the next contract renewal.

My Account

  • When signed in to My Account, pages for more than an hour, the login times out without a warning message.

This is a technical limitation of our website we will look into fixing this at the next contract renewal.

Reachdeck (Browsealoud)

Issues at 400% zoom:

  • Some icons in the menu are partially cut off
  • On first visit to our site the cookie banner can obscure the toolbar

Issues at 200% and 400% zoom:

  • When you have both the Translate page and MP3 Maker options on, you cannot scroll down far enough in order to see the Generate button.
  • On the settings page, some drop down fields are partially cut off.
  • When choosing the simplify option, the options that appear at the top of the screen overlap.
  • When choosing an option that opens information below the toolbar such as the question mark icon or Picture Dictionary, then the toolbar covers the entire page and you cannot access the options to close it again

Cookiebot

  • At 400% zoom on first visit to the website, the cookies banner appears and covers the whole page and it is not appear to be accessible via keyboard./li>
  • It also appears that you cannot reach all of the options that are available when the browser is not zoomed.
  • In the Details section there are many links with the same link text of Learn more about this provider for example in the accordion element for Necessary.
  • There is an issue in relation to name, role and value with the cookie banner.

We have spoken to Cookiebot about these issues, but they have no plans to fix them. Therefore, we are looking for an alternate supplier which meets WCAG2.1AA legislation.

Disproportionate burden


Councillors, minutes and papers

(https://democracy.manchester.gov.uk)

This includes Councillors, minutes and papers (including pdfs, images, html and videos). This site is skinned to look like manchester.gov.uk but not actually part of it.

We've assessed the cost of fixing the issues with Councillors, minutes and papers. We believe that doing so now would be a disproportionate burden within the meaning of the accessibility regulations.

We will make another assessment when the supplier contract is up for renewal.

Manchester Open Data

(https://manchester.gov.uk/open)

This site is currently under review for complete refresh and rebuild to WCAG2.1AA standards

This site is skinned to look like manchester.gov.uk but not actually part of it

Planning portal

  • Documents that are supplied to us by other organisations or members of the public will not be edited to make them accessible.

We've assessed the cost of fixing the issues with the Planning portal. We believe that doing so now would be a disproportionate burden within the meaning of the accessibility regulations.

We will make another assessment when the supplier contract is up for renewal.

Other documents and downloads

  • Documents that are supplied to us by other organisations will not be edited to make them accessible.

Content that's not within the scope of the accessibility regulations


PDFs and other documents

Some of our PDFs and Word documents are essential to providing council services e.g. PDFs that give users complex information in a clear format, using illustrations etc, or forms that were published as Word documents. We plan to either fix these or replace them with accessible HTML pages.

We have removed around 750 old and inaccessible documents so far.

The accessibility regulations do not require us to fix PDFs or other documents published before 23 September 2018 if they're not essential to providing our services. For example, we do not plan to fix the State of the City Reports from before that time; these are annual reports, used as an archive reference for work conducted in that year. Any new PDFs or Word documents we publish will meet accessibility standards.

Live video

We do not plan to add captions to live video streams, because live video is exempt from meeting the accessibility regulations. All of our pre-recorded and edited film clips will feature subtitles, captions and a transcript.

Embedded clips from YouTube

When embedding Youtube content, it automatically generates non-compliant HTML5 code. We're currently monitoring this to see if it has a negative effect on the overall user experience. At the time of publication that is not the case, but linked film clips will not function without the non-compliant code.

We add subtitles and transcripts to all videos uploaded after September 2018.

Embedded images from Flickr

We have a selection of historical photo albums on the site, some of which are only hosted on the photo-sharing website, flickr.com. The code used to embed an image or album can create non-compliant elements.

Maps

Maps and mapping services are exempt as long as essential information is provided in accessible digital manner for maps intended for navigational use. We have implemented this methodology wherever maps are used.

We aim to meet the needs of all visitors to our site, but we don't yet have a way of presenting geographical information (maps and site plans etc.) in a fully achievable and accessible format. Currently all accessible map solutions would be impossible to implement for all residents due to both resource and installation issues. As new technologies emerge we will revaluate this topic.

If you need help to understand our maps, there will be contact information specific to the relevant map content author within the page

Alternately you can contact webfeedback@manchester.gov.uk.

Read our Disproportionate Burden Assessment

Preparation of this accessibility statement

This statement was prepared on 15 September 2020. It was last reviewed on 16 May 2022.

This website was last tested in May 2022. The test was carried out by staff at Manchester City Council and our supplier, Jadu

We tested a large sample size of page types and varieties from our site. Paying careful attention to make sure all types of user journey and the most popular tasks were represented, e.g. the main homepage and also the content listed under Council Tax.

We complete our accessibility audits by testing how the site performs when accessed using accessibility tools such as WAVE (to test coding elements) and ColorZilla (to test the contrast levels between colours with hexadecimal accuracy). This is then cross referenced with general user feedback, and feedback from testing groups using user assistive technology tools (NVDA) to navigate our site.