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Social value

Social value

​The ​Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, ratified by Spain and confirmed by the EU, promotes and protects the full and equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms by all persons with disabilities.​

When taking their needs into account, under the approach of universal design and active ageing, standardisation provides an effective tool for the implementation of accessibility solutions, as a precondition for equal opportunities.

UNE has extensive experience in the development of accessibility standards in areas such as universal design, smart cities, ICT products and services, the built environment, accessible tourism, easy to read, subtitling in sign language, audio description and accessibility management systems.


To keep up-to-date on all aspects related to Standardisation and Accessibility, c​ontact us:

Fernando Machicado Martín

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Standardisation's contribution to generating social value

Accessible tourism, tourism for all
Accessible tourism, tourism for all

Promoted by the World Tourism Organization (WTO) and the O.N.C.E. Foundation, and with the support of UNE, a project has been initiated to draw up an international standard on Accessible Tourism in the technical committee ISO/TC 228 Tourism and related services. The future standard aims to become a unique, global and flexible tool for the tourist industry in a broad sense, including operators, destination managers and SMEs, etc.​​

At the national level, this work takes place in CTN 170/GT 5, "Accessible tourism"​.​​

ICT products and services for all
ICT products and services for all

Resulting from the work carried out by three European standards bodies, CEN, CENELEC and ETSI, and with the backing of the European Commission, the new version v.2.1.2 of the Standard EN 301549, "Accessibility requirements for ICT products and services” has been approved. This document, drawn up based on the European Commission mandates M/376 and M/554, will be particularly relevant for the sector, given that it will provide presumption of conformity for the essential requirements of the Web Accessibility Directive (WAD), transposed in Spain through Royal Decree 1112/2018, of 7 September, on the accessibility of websites and applications for public sector mobile devices. For this purpose, requirements applicable to mobile applications have been specified, which are covered by the Directive, and the success criteria have been updated to the recently approved WCAG 2.1, also ensuring correlative numbering with the latter. Similarly, it is now also possible to improving accessibility by including an informative annexe covering AAA success criteria. UNE, as the Spanish standardisation body, is carrying out the necessary procedures to translate it into Spanish and adopt it on a national scale. This will cancel and replace the previous edition, UNE-EN 301549 V1.1.2:2015 which – whereby the 2018 review v.2.1.2 is not mentioned in the OJ – is established as a reference document to demonstrate that the accessibility requirements have been fulfilled.

The provisions of Royal Decree 1112/2018 are already in force for new websites (with exceptions regarding complaints and claims). They will be enforceable in September 2020 for existing websites and in June 2021 for mobile applications.

The CEN-CENELEC-ETSI JWG eAccessibility, in which UNE has the role of secretary, is currently working on the coming review, v.3.1.1, of the standard which is expected to improve user-friendliness, among other aspects.

Further information

Accessible cultural heritage

Nobody questions the fact that, just because a historic building or town centre has cultural value, that does not mean we should not consider its accessibility. It is on this basis that the Working Group of Technical Standardisation Committee 41/SC 7/GT 1 “Accessibility to immovable cultural heritage”, backed by the CEAPAT, has drawn up a Report on UNE 41531 IN in order to facilitate accessibility to immovable cultural heritage while respecting its values.

To do so, it has presented a series of architectural and construction criteria and a methodology, bearing in mind that accessibility is generally not achievable if these criteria are not supplemented by measures regarding use, management, organisation, awareness-raising and ICT tools, etc.

The report is a pioneer in its field and it has generated a lot of interest internationally. On 4 December, Nieves Peinado, coordinator of Technical Standardisation Committee 41/SC 7/GT 1, presented the document before the European Commission, and the possibility of converting it into an ISO document has already been proposed, having been well received by all the other countries.

Accessible smart cities
Accessible smart cities

A smart city or community is essentially an accessible city. For this reason, CTN 178, “Smart Cities”, under the impetus of the SESIAD (Spanish Secretary of State for Information Society and Digital Agenda), has developed the UNE 178105 Standard. ”Universal Access to Smart Cities”, under the leadership of CEAPAT (Spanish Centre of Reference for Personal Autonomy and Technical Support).

The aim of this project is to contribute to determining and establishing standardised indicators/criteria that enable an assessment to be made as to whether a smart city or community is accessible and to what degree. It is an effective instrument for establishing, implementing, maintaining and improving the universal access requirements of a smart city or community using technology as a significant instrument of support, and essence of the smart city concept.

To find out more

Easy reading

​​Not all documents are easily understood, and not all people understand them in the same way. People with cognitive disabilities, seniors and foreigners are some of the groups that usually have more difficulties in understanding some texts, of the likes of a medical prescription, a legal sentence or a law.

As a result, the O.N.C.E. Foundation, with CEAPAT's support, has fostered the creation of the Working Group CTN 153/GT1 "Easy to read", which has drafted the UNE 153101 EX Standard "Easy to read". Guidelines and recommendations for the drawing up of documents that aim to promote equal opportunities through understanding key documents for the natural development of daily activities.​

After publishing this first document, it is currently working on drafting a complementary document aimed at adaptors and validators.

Accessible European built environments

​Is it possible to harmonise the accessibility requirements of a built environment at European level? This is the major challenge faced by the European Technical Committee CEN-CENELEC JTC 11, “Accessibility in the built environment”, promoted by the European Commission (Mandate M/420).

Its objectives are to develop the first European standard of functional accessibility requirements for the built environment, EN 17210, which will be supplemented by two European technical reports, which will address the technical requirements and conformity assessment, respectively.

In Spain, these works are being carried out in CTN 170/GT 2, “Accessibility in public procurement in the built environment (M/420)”.

Mandate M/420

Opening doors to accessibility

​The UNE has published the guide UNE-ISO/IEC 71 that advises standards developers to take into account the accessibility needs of users in all walks of life.​ In Europe, CEN and CENELEC have adopted this document, which is included in the UNE catalogue, as Guide CEN-CENELEC 6.

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