Accessibility and social media at Point32Health

April 2024 | Health Equity

You might be curious as to why you’re seeing image and video descriptions in Point32Health’s social media posts.

There’s a good reason for that: Point32Health is designing and developing social media content and posts to provide a smooth, inclusive experience for everyone accessing content from our pages. Including image and video descriptions in the captions of a post provides a more inclusive and accessible experience for people with various types of disabilities.

For many organizations, incorporating accessibility into their diversity, equity and inclusion strategy improves innovation, brand image and user experience.  In 2023, Point32Health scored 100% on the Disability Equality Index by Disability:IN and the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD). The Disability Equality Index is a comprehensive benchmarking tool allowing Point32Health to build a roadmap of tangible actions we can take to advance disability inclusion practices.

Point32Health is always looking for ways to improve and social media accessibility is one part of the larger ongoing diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility strategy for the organization.

Social media accessibility

According to the CDC, over 1 in 4 adults in the United States have some type of disability. Since 90% of American citizens use social media regularly, it’s safe to say some social media users have disabilities. To ensure our social media messaging is inclusive to people with disabilities, Point32Health is following these social media accessibility tips from Disability:IN:

  1. Alternative Text (Alt Text): a written description of an image, embedded within the image. This makes posts created with images accessible to screen readers.
  2. Image descriptions: While similar to Alt Text, an image description is much more detailed. This is included in the captions of posts on social media and include environmental, identity and important details of the image. Image descriptions should always be in addition to Alt Text and never a substitute.
  3. Video: Include captions on all videos. While many sites include captions automatically, ensure they’re edited for correctness. Also, make sure the captions aren’t covered by content and are easily read by using high-color contrast. Similar to image descriptions, video descriptions should be included to describe the visual content. Ensure any videos posted avoid strobing, flashing or “slam” transitions. Include warnings in video descriptions or captions if any of these transitions are used.
  4. Hashtags: Use camel case or Pascal case. Hashtags confuse screen readers. Using camel or Pascal case, allows the hashtag to be read the way it’s intended.
    Example: #DisabilityInclusion is easier to read than #disabilityinclusion
  5. Limit emoji use: Screen readers read the names of emojis, causing messaging to be changed.

Oftentimes, social media appears to be accessible. Especially since most social media websites and applications have incorporated ways to include alternative text for images and captioning for video. Utilizing the above tips helps to ensure our organization creates more inclusive and accessible communications within our social media channels.