Campaigns and activities
Italian public administration web accessibility is governed by law 4/2004 [http://www.camera.it/parlam/leggi/04004l.htm ; http://www.pubbliaccesso.gov.it/normative/law_20040109_n4.htm ; http://www.pubbliaccesso.gov.it/normative/Italian_Legislation_on_Accessibility.doc ]. Such law applies to: public administrations, economic public agencies, private firms which are licensees of public services, regional municipal companies, public assistance and rehabilitation agencies, transport and telecommunication companies in which the State has a prevalent shareholding, and ICT services contractors.
It is also worth mentioning that in 2003 the Italian Banking Association (Associazione Bancaria Italiana – ABI), in collaboration with various organzations of and for persons with disabilities, among which the Italian Union of the Blind and Partially Sighted, established a working group whose work resulted in the release of the "Guidelines for the accessibility of home banking services" addressed to all banks wishing to improve the accessibility of their online offering ( http://webaccessibile.org/normative/abi-linee-guida-per-l-accessibilita-dei-servizi-di-home-banking/ ; http://www.uiciechi.it/osi/Legge_accessibilit%C3%A0/LineeGuida.pdf ). It is essentially advice aimed to avoid problems for assistive technology users
According to the aforementioned law 4/2004 and its implementation regulations, accessibility assessment tests are carried out, at the websites' owners' request (Municipalities, Regions, etc.), by registered professional evaluators in compliance with Decree of the President of the Republic No. 75 of March 1st 2005 (http://www.pubbliaccesso.gov.it/normative/implementation_regulations.htm).
NO, even though, since there is a law on the matter, all those who are responsible for compliance with applicable laws are expected to enforce it.
If yes, at what intervals?
In case of a website which fails to comply with Law No. 4 of 2004, the relevant contract between the Public Administration body and the company commissioned to build the website is rendered null and void. Administrative sanctions are also provided for against Public Administration managers. Further details can be found at the following link (in Italian): http://www.webimpossibile.net/05/1.1.05.htm.
There is no official obligation, but in some Universities (e.g. Roma Tre University) this issue is taken into consideration in IT degree courses.
In annex A of the implementation regulation of the above-mentioned law there is a list including 22 technical requirements to be fulfilled (http://www.pubbliaccesso.gov.it/normative/DM080705-A-en.htm ), most of them taken from the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0. When building an accessible website it is possible to make reference to accessibility tests and suggestions from W3C website (http://www.w3c.com) or to the suggestions available on the page of the Italian Union of the Blind' and Partially Sighted's website dedicated to the Observatory on Websites (Osservatorio Siti Internet – OSI) a group of people entrusted with the task of assessing the level of web accessibility for visually impaired persons (http://www.uiciechi.it/osi/). An article in Italian about tests performed by visually impaired persons is available at http://www.uiciechi.it/osi/02LavoriGruppoOSI/index.html, while interviews, also in Italian, to OSI Commission members about problems that visually impaired Internet users may meet are available at http://www.uiciechi.it/osi/08Interviste/index.html.