PEAT Talks Recap: The Growth of a Global Accessibility Profession

Given how integral accessible technology is to workplace efficiency and productivity, it’s no surprise that a team effort is essential for providing accessibility professionals with a strong network of professional support. In our August PEAT Talk, Rob Sinclair discussed how the recent merger of IAAP and G3ict will promote and support the accessibility profession on a more global scale.

Rob, the President of the IAAP Global Leadership Team, began by sharing the rationale for the IAAP’s inception. The founding members realized a need for a “very broad range of perspectives, all the way from human resources to marketing, to the business leaders that need to buy in and come to work.” They envisioned a pathway for professionals to keep their accessibility skills and knowledge on the cutting edge, particularly given the rapidly growing, unmet worldwide demand for IT professionals, developers, educators, business leaders, and content creators knowledgeable in accessibility.

Moreover, IAAP was developed to serve as a global resource for sharing what’s working, troubleshooting what isn’t, and promoting the business case for technology accessibility. Because professionals with a stake in the technological accessibility of their workplaces were often isolated in small fields, IAAP launched in 2014 with the idea of bringing together collaboration and guidance on a global scale.

To that end, IAAP shared a mission and a vision with G3ict, a nonprofit organization developed by the United Nations (U.N.) to drive adoption and implementation of the U.N. Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), a human rights convention intended to improve and expand access for the global disability community.

Because of IAAP’s and G3ict’s common goal to build up the capacity of the global accessibility field, the two organizations recently merged to strengthen and amplify the critical work being done by accessibility professionals across the globe. Rob was pleased to share the news of the merger, as he believes that it will help IAAP and G3ict reach their simple, yet powerful bottom line: “to really improve the lives of people with disabilities around the world.”

Together, IAAP and G3ict will continue to provide news, services, and trainings, leading a thriving community of people dedicated to access for all. One recent example is IAAP’s first professional certification, the Certified Professional in Accessibility Core Competencies (CPACC). Rob explained that this new certification is designed for anyone interested in the field of accessibility who wants to obtain baseline knowledge on accessibility, common disabilities, assistive technologies, and global standards and policies. IAAP and G3ict will be working together to enhance the global perspective of the CPACC training.

Rob and his colleagues are devoted to expanding the work of IAAP and G3ict and steering the new partnership toward accelerating technological accessibility. He called upon everyone to join this movement and share what supports they need most from the organization—because the growth of a global accessibility profession is truly a team effort.

To learn more about IAAP, the recent merger with G3ict, and how you can get involved, check out the archived August PEAT Talk. And of course, we invite you to share your comments and insights on the benefits of professional community involvement in the accessibility field.