ATO Major Fail on Accessibility

Yes it’s that time of year again, income tax return time and the ATO have once again provided an eTax application. Today on twitter I discovered that a glaring issue which has been a fault of eTax since it’s inception and has not been addressed yet again, is that it only runs on the Windows platforms. What about the thousands of Australians who are running the MAC OS or the thousands who are running a Linux OS, they are being discriminated against based on their OS of choice.

Even in my house this isn’t good enough, I am using a Dell running Vista, yay! I can lodge my tax return using the very convenient eTax application, but my 16 year old daughter who has a part-time job at Boost Juice cannot because she is using a MacBook Pro.

Something needs to be done about this, and it needs to be done right now and made available to the public in the next couple of months. The lodgement date should be extended for people who are effected by this accessibility issue.

This really is something that should also be under HREOCs jurisdiction as it is a basic Human Right to run whatever operating system you choose to run.

(Cross post from my blog http://raebuerckner.com)

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Nerida Hart

However you cannot use Vista to apply for an ABN so I discovered. I even rang the ATO for help and it was a joke. The helpline person kept saying I can see it why can’t you. I tried both the PacBook Pro and the Dell using Vista and neither were able to interact with the site – just kept sending me round and round in circles. I would think this does not meet Australian Government standards??

Rae Buerckner

Definitely doesn’t, and so many Australian Government sites do not. The problem is that somebody has to complain to HREOC or AGIMO regarding accessibility and how to do this is not widely disseminated. The general public, in this case computer users don’t have any idea that there are accessibility requirements for Australian Government sites, this needs to be changed. The general public, citizen Joe think that it’s just more red tape they need to jump through.

Sad really!