USDA Rural Development is committed to making our website accessible to all USDA customers and employees. Our web pages are undergoing review and redesign as necessary to ensure that they meet or exceed the requirements of Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
Many of our web pages currently meet the Section 508 accessibility standards. Furthermore, USDA Rural Development continues to work on making all web pages accessible. Thank you very much for your patience through this redesign process. If you have any comments or suggestions for improvement, please contact Anne Todd at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (202) 720-1021.
The Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility Standards ("Section 508 final rule"), National Federation of the Blind's Guidelines for Web Accessibility and the World Wide Web Consortium's Web Content Accessibility Guidelines describe the elements of accessible web pages. Yahoo lists companies that provide assistive computer technology, including screen reading software.
Adobe Acrobat PDF Files
Many of the documents on the Rural Development website are in HTML or ASCII (plain text) formats. These formats are generally accessible to people who use screen readers. We also have a large number of documents in Adobe® Acrobat® Portable Document Format (PDF).
PDF format is used to preserve the content and layout of our hard copy publications. Publications in PDF can only be viewed and printed using the Adobe Acrobat Reader, version 3.0 or higher. You can download and get help using the Acrobat Reader at the Adobe Systems, Inc. site. The downloadable Acrobat Reader software is available at NO CHARGE from Adobe.
People using screen-reading devices generally are unable to read documents directly in PDF format, unless they have an accessibility plug-in installed on their system along with the Adobe Acrobat Reader. This plug-in is available at NO CHARGE from Adobe. Adobe also has online tools that will convert PDF files to HTML on request. To get the plug-in and latest news about Adobe's accessibility tools and services, visit the Access Adobe site.
Requesting Alternative Formats
The USDA TARGET Center converts USDA information and documents into alternative formats, including Braille, large print, video description, diskette, and audiotape. For more information, visit the TARGET Center's website at www.usda.gov/oo/formats.htm or call the Center at (202) 720-2600 (Voice/TTY).
PowerPoint and Word Files
You can view our online publications that are in Microsoft PowerPoint® (.ppt) format if you have any version of PowerPoint installed on your computer. For those who don't have the software, the Microsoft Corporation offers a FREE PowerPoint file viewer. You can download and get help using the PowerPoint viewer at the Microsoft Download Center.
You can view publications in Microsoft Word® (.doc) format if you have Word, version 6.0 or higher, installed on your computer. Word documents can also be viewed with many other word processing software programs. Additionally, Microsoft offers a FREE Word file viewer that you can download at its Microsoft Download Center.
Some of the web pages on our website set font sizes, font colors, and font types using style sheets. You may adjust your browser settings to disable these styles or override them with your own preferred font sizes, colors, and types.
Frequently Asked Questions
Answers to common questions about Rural Development programs are on our Frequently Asked Questions page.