GSA opens 508 IT center

GSA opens 508 IT center

To encourage agencies to comply with Section 508, the General Services Administration opened its Assistive Technology Showcase yesterday at its Washington headquarters.

Hundreds of federal officials flocked to the center, which displays some of the latest technologies to improve accessibility for disabled users.

GSA administrator Stephen Perry said the center's goal was to "help other federal agencies serve the public" because agencies have not moved fast enough in complying with Section 508. "It's an effort to quicken the pace of change."

Bruce McFarlane, acting director of the Agriculture Department's IT center, Technology Accessible Resources Gives Empowerment Today, said agencies did what they could with limited funds last year when the deadline for meeting Section 508 mandates passed in June.

In the future, agencies will invest more money in IT to improve accessibility, he said. Agriculture plans to double its investment in accessibility technology in fiscal 2004 and 2005, McFarlane added.

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