Introduction to Inclusion and Accessibility with Microsoft

Link to closed captioning version: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qM7wFZo5yfI&t=175s.

Hi. I’m Jenny Lay-Flurrie, Chief Accessibility Officer at Microsoft. We’re going to talk about accessibility, so first let’s explain what this is. There are lots of examples of accessibility in the world. There’s accessibility of buildings and physical space with ramps, power door openers and more. And there’s also digital accessibility. Rendering websites, software, and games, to be accessible and inclusive for people with disabilities. All this and a lot more are great. Because at the core, accessibility is about creating experiences that are inclusive of the one billion people with disabilities around the world. With accessibility, we have both an opportunity and a responsibility to create inclusive tech that works for all of us. Accessibility is NOT optional. It is a key priority for Microsoft.

Technology can connect people in how they communicate, how they learn, transact and experience the world. And when tech is inclusive, we can connect people and information in amazing ways. On the flip side, if accessibility is not considered and your process does not prioritize accessibility, you have the power to exclude people, which is clearly not what we want to do. So, if we’re really going to lean into our mission to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more, we have to think about accessibility, and embed it into the DNA of Microsoft. It’s an ecosystem. It starts with the people that we hire and empower. Right the way through to our marketing, communications, to the standards to which we hold our suppliers, vendors, and partners, our products, our innovations, and our workplace. Because we have an amazing opportunity to explore the great potential and hard questions, of how to create the next generation of accessible tech and the wave of innovation that comes with it. Just imagine what we can do together.

We’re going to take you on a journey through time and space, and to illustrate some of the common scenarios. Just remember that everyone’s experience is completely different. And we’re going to share just a few stories that will be helpful in understanding accessibility for now and the future. Thank you for investing your time to watch this today.