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California Federal Court Grants Class Action Treatment to Lawsuit Challenging Accessibility of Target’s Website to the Blind

Class Action Certification Motion Granted by Federal Court in California Class Action Attacking Target’s Failure to Permit “Screen-Reading” Software to Work on its Website

Molly Selvin of the Los Angeles Times reports that U.S. District Court Judge Marilyn Hall Patel has granted plaintiffs’ class action certification motion in a California class action against Target challenging the accessibility of the company’s website to the blind. According to Ms. Selvin, the class action complaint alleges that Target’s website violates the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) as well as California state law because “screen-reading software doesn’t work on parts of its website, essentially making it unusable to blind people.” Plaintiffs sought class action treatment arguing that “Target hasn’t implemented ‘technologically simple and not economically prohibitive’ code into its site that would allow the software to vocalize all [of] the site’s content.” In agreeing that class action treatment was warranted, Judge Patel noted “that this is ‘an age when commerce is increasingly conducted on and through the Internet.'” Target promises to appeal the ruling.

Ms. Selvin’s article, entitled “Suit may spur greater Web access for blind,” may be found in the Business Section of the October 4, 2007 edition of the Los Angeles Times.