Tuesday, June 16 marks a special day for Microsoft. On that date, Rob Sinclair, Microsoft's Chief Accessibility Officer, will accept a Corporate Leadership Award for their longstanding commitment to accessibility for people with autism and other developmental disabilities.
Sinclair will accept the honor at QSAC's (Quality Services for the Autism Community) annual gala at The Lighthouse at Chelsea Piers (West 26 Street and West Side Highway) in New York City.
Microsoft have demonstrated quite a bit of accessibility advancements. One of many, is the Microsoft Accessibility help desk where computer users with disabilities can get technical support from a technician who actively knows about, and in some cases, uses screen readers such as NVDA or JAWS for Windows among other adaptive technologies such as Zoomtext, one popular screen magnifier in the visually impaired community. Technicians are trained on how to interact with varying developmental disabilities as well, ensuring the staff who work at the accessibility help desk are well prepared.
That’s certainly not all Microsoft has done to expound and improve accessibility. Microsoft have made accessibility strides in the business and development sector as well, combining accessibility with business innovations. Microsoft founded the International Association of Accessibility Professionals (IAAP), which helps build a modern, global workforce with the skills to design new information and technologies that are accessible.
"Microsoft's commitment to the development of accessible technology for children and adults with autism and other developmental disabilities is helping to create a more inclusive society," said Gary Maffei, executive director of QSAC in a statement. "Under Microsoft's leadership, accessibility has become a focal point of corporate responsibility programs".
Past recipients of honors from QSAC have included Sprint, PIMCO, Pfizer, and Duncan Niederauer of NYSE Euronext, among others.