Standards Norway (standardization organization)

Three questions to Rudolph Brynn, Project leader within the area Design for all, Standards Norway (standardization organization). Funka Nu's experts work with standardization in Norway, Sweden, Spain and in the EU. One of many exciting standardisations committees Funka Nu's is working with is on accessible e-services in Norway. This is a unique work where Funka Nu contributes with our knowledge and experience. Rudolph Brynn from Standards Norway tells us more:

Why is this important?

- For serveral reasons. Mainly for the lack of a standard in this area. Secondly these services account for an increasingly important part of the economy, particularly e-services. This means that low accessibility could have serious consequences, particularly for persons with disabilities. Therefore we want a standard that will provide general over-all requirements on everything from the physical environment to the user interface.

Does any similar standard exist in other countries?

- We perceive this to be a pioneer work, as far as we know. There are some guidelines that give general recommendations to service suppliers to be flexible and considerate towards persons with ”special needs”. We don't believe in that term. All human beings, regardless of ability, have the same need of services. Every individual has requests for freedom to choose on how to receive the service, for example, regarding format. One good example is Scandic Hotels who’s employees are taught not to offer assistance to guests with a visible disability, unless the guest ask for it. All guests should be treated equally.

What do you think about the results of the standardisation of accessible services?

- The aim is equal access to services for all. We hope that the standard will give increased awareness of service providers and that public sector will use it as requirement when procuring services. In the future we can suggest the standard to European level so it can be applied in other countries.