The European Disability Forum (EDF) has replied to the European Commission’s planned Digital Compass Policy Programme initative roadmap cosultation. This initiative seeks to set up a governance framework providing structured cooperation between the Commission and the Member States to achieve the EU’s digital targets envisioned in the EC Communication on 2030 Digital Targets of 9 March 2021.
We have welcomed the opportunity to give feedback and stressed that European Institutions should ensure inclusive digital transition, by committing to improve accessibility and digital inclusion of persons with disabilities in all areas of public and private life, so that they equally benefit from EU action rather than be left behind due to the digital transformation.
To make sure that the Digital Compass Policy Programme benefits persons with disabilities in the EU, in our feedback we recommended that it must:
- Establish an obligation for the European Commission and Member States to harmonize and mainstream accessibility and interoperability of digital technologies in the EU and ensure digital participation of persons with disabilities in all areas of digital public and private life.
- Ensure that monitoring and reporting considers accessibility and digital participation of persons with disabilities, namely in the enhanced Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI) and in the European State of the Digital Decade Report – ESDDR.
- Ensure that all public funding incorporates accessibility as funding criterion and targeted funding is provided to projects aiming to improve accessibility for persons with disabilities.
- Meaningfully engage organizations of persons with disabilities, accessibility experts in the planned stakeholder forum, and possible expert group for implementation of the Digital Compass.
- EDF Recommendations to Digital Compass Policy Programme – Roadmap consultation (Word)
- EDF Recommendations to Digital Compass Policy Programme – Roadmap consultation (PDF)
This roadmap consultation is open to public feedback by 22 July 2021.