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Ability Central Launches Disability Resource Kit for Media Professionals

Nonprofit celebrating Global Accessibility Awareness Day by offering free resources for journalists and media outlets to improve digital content accessibility

A visually impaired Black man with close-cropped black hair controls his computer via the keyboard while talking to a Black woman in a pink shirt sitting beside him

Oakland, California – May 14, 2024 – Ability Central, a US-based foundation expanding communication and information access for people with disabilities, is unveiling a new set of free online resources to mark Global Accessibility Awareness Day on May 16th. The Journalist’s Guide to Disability in Media: An Overview of Disability Inclusion, Accessibility, and Representation is designed to help media professionals navigate the latest developments in digital accessibility and disability representation.

“This guide is a helpful reminder that as journalists we should strive not just to make our material as widely accessible as possible – but also to improve how we represent and portray people with disabilities,” says Laurence Zavriew, senior broadcast journalist at the BBC World Service. “I found it comprehensive, simple, and easy to use – a practical resource for time-poor journalists looking for straightforward guidelines.”

The Journalist’s Guide to Disability in Media offers educational and practical information for journalists, influencers, streamers, hosts, and media teams. It is designed to help creators who want to enhance their connection with the disability community and stay up to date with evolving language and culture. In the digital age, new accessibility tools allow communities to connect in more authentic ways. However, media outlets and independent creators can easily overlook the full inclusion of people with sensory and communication disabilities, simply because they do not know the latest developments in accessibility practices and disability culture.

The resource kit explores the basics of web accessibility, techniques to make online content accessible for augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) devices, and how to use tools already on hand to check the accessibility of existing content. In addition, Ability Central’s new resource collection explores disabilities and the importance of representation in the media, as well as what language to include or avoid when creating disability-related content.

The Journalist’s Guide to Disability in Media provides simple, actionable tools and tips writers and media teams can use today to make coverage more accessible for people with diverse communication needs. Curated content tips help writers and creators become more involved with their readers, viewers, and listeners in the disability community. The practices and resources in this guide can ensure deeper engagement and authenticity across a variety of platforms.

“Our hope is that everyone who creates, consumes, or shares content finds something to benefit from in these resources,” says Matt Cherry, director of philanthropy at Ability Central. “Global Accessibility Awareness Day is a perfect opportunity to start a meaningful conversation about how journalists can do more to engage and include people with communication disabilities.”

Visit to read The Journalist’s Guide to Disability in Media: An Overview of Disability Inclusion, Accessibility, and Representation.  

Headquartered in Oakland, California, Ability Central is the philanthropic division of the California Communication Access Foundation, a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit founded in 2003. Ability Central is committed to serving as an educator, convener, and resource working to expand communication and information access for individuals who are Deaf, disabled, and neurodivergent. Ability Central also offers technical support to other nonprofits working to help people with disabilities and provides online information and resources for people with questions about disabilities and communication access. Since 2010, Ability Central has granted more than $13.5 million to 200+ projects, serving more than half a million people with disabilities.

Contact: Grant Barringer, Communications Manager