Global Accessibility Awareness Day

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Global Accessibility Awareness Day
Legal statusactive
Purposeeducate people about accessibility
Region served
Official language
English, French, Arabic, Portuguese
LeaderJoe Devon
WebsiteOfficial site

Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) is an awareness day focusing on digital access and inclusion for the more than one billion people with disabilities and impairments. It is marked annually on the third Thursday of May.[1] Upcoming GAAD events will be celebrated on:

  • May 19, 2022
  • May 18, 2023
  • May 16, 2024
  • May 15, 2025

In 2018, in addition to a number of virtual events marking GAAD, there were events open to the public in at least nineteen countries on six continents.[2]

According to the Global Accessibility Awareness Day website, "The purpose of GAAD is to get everyone talking, thinking and learning about digital (web, software, mobile, etc.) access/inclusion and people with different disabilities."[3] Local Global Accessibility Awareness Day events sometimes showcase how people with disabilities use the web and digital products using assistive technologies, or assist people creating technology products in taking into consideration the needs of certain disabilities.[2]

Global Accessibility Awareness Day launched in May 2012.[1] It was inspired by a blog post by Los Angeles-based web developer Joe Devon. Devon worked with Jennison Asuncion, an accessibility professional from Toronto, to co-found GAAD.


Examples of local Global Accessibility Awareness Day events include:

  • Since 2012 the Los Angeles Accessibility and Inclusive Design Group, led by Joseph O’Connor has organized a GAAD event.[4]
  • Minnesota IT Services has encouraged employees to perform their jobs for 15 minutes without using a mouse.[5][6]
  • In 2015, a one day conference was hosted in Ottawa by OpenConcept Consulting, to celebrate GAAD.[7]
  • In 2016, a one day conference was hosted by Carleton University and organized by A11yYOW, Ottawa's accessibility Meetup.[8]
  • In 2017, Apple released a series of videos and organized a concert as part of a week-long series of events marking Global Accessibility Awareness Day.[9][10]
  • In 2017, the University of California, San Francisco offered a website accessibility testing clinic.[11]
  • In 2017, a GAAD event in Ottawa featured speakers from Carleton University, the Canadian government and the Ottawa area.[12]
  • In 2018, there were a series of events planned in Hyderabad[13] and Bangalore, India.[14]
  • In 2018, an evening event was hosted in Ottawa by OpenConcept Consulting and we had a live chat with participants in Accessibility Twin Cities, who were also celebrating GAAD.[15]
  • In 2020, the Government Digital Service in the United Kingdom ran a day of online-only events to raise awareness of digital accessibility.[16]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Asuncion, Jennison. "Background". Global Accessibility Awareness Day. Retrieved 2018-05-08.
  2. ^ a b Asuncion, Jennison. "2018 Events". Retrieved 2018-05-08.
  3. ^ Asuncion, Jennison. "Global Accessibility Awareness Day". Global Accessibility Awareness Day. Retrieved 2018-05-08.
  4. ^ "Remembering Joseph O'Connor (1953 – 2020)".
  5. ^ "nomousechallenge". MN IT Services. Retrieved 2017-11-20.
  6. ^ "The #NoMouse Challenge". Retrieved 2018-05-08.
  7. ^ "Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) 2015 Flickr Photos". Meetup. Retrieved 2015-05-21.
  8. ^ "Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) 2016 Flickr Photos". Meetup. Retrieved 2016-05-19.
  9. ^ "Apple highlights Global Accessibility Awareness Day on May 18 with "Designed for everyone" video series". AppleInsider. Retrieved 2018-05-08.
  10. ^ "Apple holds Stevie Wonder concert on campus in honor of Global Accessibility Awareness Day". 9to5Mac. 2017-05-19. Retrieved 2018-05-08.
  11. ^ "Drop-In: UCSF Website Accessibility Testing Clinic". Retrieved 2018-05-08.
  12. ^ "Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) 2017". Meetup. Retrieved 2018-05-08.
  13. ^ Systems, Deque. "aXe Hackathon - Deque India celebrates GAAD 2018 on May 17th at Hyderabad". Retrieved 2018-05-08.
  14. ^ "Global Accessibility Awareness Day India". Global Accessibility Awareness Day India. Retrieved 2018-05-08.
  15. ^ "Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) 2018 Flickr Photos". Meetup. Retrieved 2018-05-21.
  16. ^ "What happened on Global Accessibility Awareness Day at GDS - Government Digital Service". Retrieved 2021-03-13.

External links[edit]