September 8, 2006, 12:00 AM

Blind advocacy group can sue Target over web accessibility, judge rules

The lawsuit by the National Federation of the Blind and others contends that Target.com violates the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Kurt Peters

Executive Editor

 

A class action lawsuit charging that Target Corp.’s web site is inaccessible to the blind can move forward, a federal judge ruled yesterday. The lawsuit-filed by the National Federation of the Blind and others-contends that Target.com violates the Americans with Disabilities Act because it’s impossible for the blind to use the site.

Target had asked the judge to dismiss the lawsuit, saying that only its stores are covered by disabilities laws. However, the judge said that all services provided by Target, including its web site, must comply with disabilities laws.

“This ruling is a great victory for blind people throughout the country,” says Marc Maurer, NFB president. “We are pleased that the court recognized that the blind are entitled to equal access to retail web sites.”

Target spokesmen were not available for comment, but the retailer has said it believes it is in compliance with all applicable laws.

The judge declined to rule on the federation’s request for a preliminary injunction requiring Target to take steps to make the site accessible to the blind.

The suit-originally filed in Alameda, CA, superior court on Feb. 7-later was moved to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

 

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