Information Technology Industry Council (ITIC) has just released an updated version of Accessibility Conformance Report (ACR) popularly known as VPAT (Voluntary Product Accessibility Template.
VPAT stands for Voluntary Product Accessibility Template. It is a document used in the information technology industry to evaluate the accessibility of a product or system with respect to established accessibility standards. The VPAT provides a comprehensive overview of how well a product conforms to the Section 508 standards of the Rehabilitation Act.
The Rehabilitation Act, specifically Section 508, requires that electronic and information technology (EIT) developed, procured, maintained, or used by the federal government be accessible to people with disabilities. The VPAT is a self-disclosure document that allows vendors to describe how their products or services address accessibility criteria outlined in the Section 508 standards.
VPAts typically includes information about state of accessibility for a product from different prospectives such as keyboard operability, colour contrast, structure of the document, focus order etc., as per different standards such as Web Content Accessibility Guidelines.
VPATs are often requested during procurement processes, allowing organizations to make informed decisions about the accessibility of the technology they are considering. They are used as a tool for both vendors and purchasers to communicate and understand the level of accessibility a product provides.