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Digital Dialogue #4 – Ensuring Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities into the Digital Space

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  • Online (Zoom)
  • 2nd June 2022
    4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

📅 02 June 2022 🕟16:00-17:00 CEST (Central European Summer Time).

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Digital Dialogue #4

Ensuring Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities into the Digital Space

Around one billion people live with disabilities – whether caused by accident, illness or genetics. Actually and potentially, these people could be the ones who benefit most from the Internet: According to surveys, persons with disabilities use the internet more often than persons without disabilities given that it eases communication in general and participation in social and cultural life in particular.

The International Civil Society Centre has obtained the support of Sightsavers for the Digital Dialogue event series jointly undertaken with CivicTech Africa: In 2022 all Digital Dialogue panel discussions will be interpreted into International Sign and with live captions. We take this opportunity to ask the question: How to ensure the inclusion of persons with disabilities into the digital space?

The discussion might start with those who generate content for the Internet. A case in point is the fact that most websites are designed for mouse operation. But what if the person is incapacitated to trigger a mouse click? What if content can’t be read but must be listened to?

From the point of view of persons with disabilities access to the Internet hinges first and foremost on resources: Does everyone have the means and is trained to use a device for accessing the Internet? Once such issues are resolved new impediments might occur: How does a person with limited mobility use a keyboard or other devices? A person in a wheelchair may encounter barriers entering a physical structure but can use the internet. And then there are deaf and hard of hearing people and blind and partially sighted people and many other examples And like crutches and wheelchairs support people with limited mobility, a range of assistive devices are available in the market that help accessing the Internet for those who could not otherwise access it. The design of the Internet and its content should be more inclusive too.

The Internet is the main means of communication for civil society organizations. But are their webpages, apps and events in compliance with some basic rules of access? Who defines those rules and promotes their application? Where is money needed and where awareness would just be enough?

Digital inclusion remains a challenge for civil society organizations and the civic tech community. The ambition should be clear: Inclusion of and access to the Internet for everybody and everywhere. Join us when a panel of experts will discuss possible ways forward.

 

THE PANEL:
Ms. Barb Iverson, Code University Berlin, Moderator
1. Ms. Sally Nduta, United Disabled Persons of Kenya (UDPK), Nairobi/Kenya
2. Dr. Mohammed Ali Loutfy, G3ICT and the Stakeholder Group of Persons with Disabilities,
3. n/n, Kopf. Hand und Fuss, Berlin/Germany