At Time Warner Cable, our mission is to connect people with information, entertainment and each other and give customers control in ways that are simple and easy. In 2010, Congress enacted landmark legislation that lined up nicely with this objective.
The 21st Century Video and Communications Accessibility Act requires industry to move towards greater inclusion for people with disabilities. For our company, the major requirements include:
• passing through video description for digital and IP television content;
• providing a closed captioning function on all remote controls;
• making available audible program guides on request; and
• providing access to any email service, VoIP capability, and interoperable video conferencing service as well as the equipment and network used for such services.
As part of our effort to meet or beat these requirements, we decided to go one step further and offer our customers a website that explains the accessibility features of our service offerings.
We know that people with disabilities and their family members are some of our most loyal customers and best employees. To take full advantage of our services, they may require accessibility accommodations (such as closed captioning, video description, large button remotes, etc.).
As we worked with advocates on the passage of the 2010 legislation and towards its implementation at the FCC, we heard that it would be very helpful for us to provide a resource page for customers with disabilities that serves as a one-stop shop for information about our inclusion efforts and offerings and to provide feedback to us about how we can make our services more accessible.
Working with members of TWC-Able, our employee resource groups that champion disability inclusion, we developed a website to do just that. Launched ealier this month, the resource page provides information about our products and services, updates on our implementation of the requirements of the 2010 legislation, and ways to contact us for more information about accessibility topics as well as employment for people with disabilities. The goal is to regularly update the site with information and provide updates to our customers on our efforts to implement the 2010 legislation.
According to the Census Bureau, more than 56 million U.S. adults live with a disability (link is a PDF), which is roughly 20% of the population. The vast majority of these individuals are heads of households. More than half own their own homes, and they have approximately $200 billion in annual spending power.
Returning veterans are a large and growing number of this population. Disability access and inclusion are a priority for Time Warner Cable, and we will continue to work closely with advocates, consumer representatives and employees to ensure that customers with disabilities are able to take full advantage of all the benefits of broadband and digital communications services. So check out the new website and let us know what you think!