Expanding the reach and impact of the nation’s largest disability rights group
Disability Rights California launches new accessible, responsive website
Disability Rights California (DRC) is the largest disability rights group in the nation. Established in 1978 to protect and advocate for Californians with disabilities, DRC directly assisted nearly 25,000 people last year alone, and in that time hundreds of thousands more lives were touched through their litigation, policy work, training, and publications.
Yet, despite the tremendous impact of their work, the legacy website design wasn’t holding up its end of the bargain: it was not accessible to the visitors who needed it most. The limitations of the old content management system were preventing the DRC team from sharing their mission, programs, and tools in a meaningful way.
For the new disabilityrightsca.org, we set out to create a new space that would expand the reach, impact, and storytelling of the organization in a beautiful, elegant and accessible way.
A few of the things we love about this site
- Creating accessible website experience: In order to reach DRC’s core audience and make an impact in their lives, it was crucial that we build a site that targeted the highest level of accessibility—WCAG 2.0 AAA. From font selection to video, to carousels, to content, to contrast, to markup, we carefully evaluated the user experience and tested the details to ensure that everyone who visits the new DRC site is able to quickly and easily find the information and assistance they need without frustration. To ensure we were hitting the mark, we set up live testing sessions so we could review the way actual users, including those with disabilities, complete key tasks and make necessary adjustments. The insights we gathered were invaluable and it’s already influenced the way we think about all of our projects and the people that use them. The improvements to our process, designs, and technology will benefit each new project we take on.
- Bringing helpful resources to the surface: During our discovery phase, we analyzed site usage, stakeholder surveys, and exploration exercises to learn what content visitors are looking for. In the new site, we’ve had the opportunity to excavate all of these valuable resources and bring them to the surface. The result is a website that immediately shares its mission and drives visitors to the most popular resources, like ways to get help, publications, and programs. We’re excited to see the effects of these meaningful changes and watch how they transform site usage and call center inquiries.
- Creating a platform for storytelling: DRC has been helping Californians with disabilities for 40 years. We needed a place to celebrate this and highlight other spotlight stories. On the new site, we’ve empowered their communications team to bring these stories and other key stats to the public right on the homepage.
- The first DD site built on the new Drupal 8 platform: Thanks so much to the DRC team for offering to be the first site built on our new D8 platform! This milestone has been in the making for quite awhile and we’re excited to see it come to fruition. For the last year, Dennis has been in the trenches, carefully scrutinizing legacy code, evaluating usage stats, and making thoughtful UX decisions to ensure that the new platform is lean, mean, and ready for prime time. Even in this early version of the new product, the attention to detail is evident. Speed and performance are outstanding, image and file handling are drastically improved, and other goodies like enhanced URL structure have already begun to surface. Though the platform is young, we’re already in love with the new product and are excited to watch the new model develop and grow with each new project.
We’re extremely proud of the work that we’ve been able to accomplish with the DRC team and encourage you to check it out!
Let’s work together
If you have a project with similar needs, let us know. We’d love to learn more about it and walk you through a free demo or consultation.