Making More Accessible for the Visually Impaired

April 8, 2009

2646892351_f6b7698b31 Although I'm not computer literate, I know what a key role our website,, plays in booking business at our hotels.  More than 750, 000 individuals visit every day.  Thank you for that.

While the Internet is very helpful and a useful tool, we understand that many visually impaired people have a difficult time using it.  However, my son Steve, who is legally blind, relies tremendously on his computer.  It speaks to him, talks to him, reads the newspaper to him, and he is really up to speed on what's going on in the world.

Many people take for granted their ability to perform everyday tasks like use the Internet, drive a car or read a book.  At Marriott, we are always working hard to improve the access and services we provide to our guests with disabilities.

To help address these challenges, we are currently working with the American Foundation for the Blind, whose commitment to making the lives of the visually impaired more productive is unparalleled.  I am proud to announce that Marriott will be the first corporate partner in their Accessibility Assurance Program.  By participating in this program, we are working to fulfill our pledge of making the right choices for all of our customers.

We will begin to apply new design standards and features to allow people with disabilities to use the site with greater ease.  These features include new technology that will ensure our site is compatible with assistive devices called screen readers.  We will also offer sight impaired users the ability to report problems using the site and make recommendations on how to further improve the experience on

We look forward to working with the AFB and hope people who previously had difficulties using our site will find these enhancements helpful.  We look forward to receiving your feedback.

I'm Bill Marriott and thanks for helping me keep Marriott on the move.

Making marriottcom More Accessible for the Visually Impaired

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I am a longtime Marriott shareholder (albeit a small timer) and just recently heard that Marriott offers room discounts to their shareholders. I am staying at the Marriott Airport Hotel in Kansas City, Mo in May, 2009 and possibly in NY in mid-July. How do I go about getting a discount if this is true? Thank you.

Good for you, Mr. Marriott. Making things compatible and easier for people is always a good thing. I hope more follow in your footsteps.

Great job on C-SPAN. Are there any exciting plans/changes Marriott chain this year.

We've come a long way since Stevie Wonder bought the very first OCR machine (The Kurweil Reading Machine) in 1976! It's great to see that Marriott continues the tradition of Ray Kurzweil and his quest to make disabilities a thing of the past.

Your PAC gave money to sore loser Norm Coleman. Get him to concede or we boycott you, Best Buy, General Mills, 3M, Target

I have a daughter who is legally blind. While she is only 7, I appreciate the efforts of Mr. Marriott on the behalf of visually impaired people. It's because of people like you, and your working with AFB that people like my daughter will have the same exposure and opportunities that everyone else does. Thank you!!!

I expected to see an abundance of responses to Mr. Marriott's blog on this new AFB affiliation and the impact planned for Marriott properties. I am sure there will many once you have an opprtunity to read this announcement.
What isn't to;d in this latest on the move entry is that Marriott International and the Marriott families and foundations have been consistant and continuing providers of support to inumerable good works. Whether it pertains to diversity and multicultural action, environmantal issues and very importantly, support for people with disbilities, they have been in the forefront of leadership in corporate and foundation responsibility. Thinking back to my active working days with Marriott, I recall the beginning of BRIDGES see:
( and the wonderful unselfish work that has been provided to youth with disabilities, preparing them for employment. Just read the success stoties to get your heart warmed up. See Bill Marriott's blog of March 20, 2007 on BRIDGES and you will se how this man and his Dad's spirit have inspired so many to work for the disadvantaged and long before it was the popular thing to do. It has always been the correct thing to do and your recognition of the wonderful outlook of the Marriott culture and the pro-active contributions to our deserving, limited capacity neighbors, should be expressed. Tell Bill thanks, just like I am doing. Thanks Bill for the wonderful and unselfish acts that you and Marriott have provided to our many less fortunate friends.

Thanks for working with the AFB to add enhancements to the sites. This helps the individual be more independent despite their setback and raising self esteem.