Blind shoppers win the right to sue Target 4 Oct 2007
It's been a long wait for developments in the National Federation for the Blind (NFB) vs. Target accessibility row (A 13-month wait, in fact). However, the LA Times reports that, on Tuesday this week, Target finally lost its bid to dismiss the NFB's lawsuit:
"U.S. District Judge Marilyn Hall Patel in San Francisco rejected Target's request to dismiss the case. She also certified the case as a class action, ruling that all legally blind people in the U.S. who have been denied access to services at Target stores because of deficiencies in the company's website can join the suit."
Target had argued that no law - neither the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) nor state law - could require it to make its website accessible to the blind.
While this ruling is interesting, it's important to stress that victory for the NFB is by no means guaranteed. Target insists that its website is accessible to the blind and has even submitted expert witness assesments from several screen-reader users who can operate the site perfectly well. It therefore seems that Target.com's "inaccessibility" is still very much open to dispute.
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