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Towards Innovation for Disability Friendly ICT Sector in Kenya

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Presentation on theme: "Towards Innovation for Disability Friendly ICT Sector in Kenya"— Presentation transcript:

1 Towards Innovation for Disability Friendly ICT Sector in Kenya
PRESENTATION MADE DURING NATIONAL CONFERENCE ON DISABILITY AND ACCESSIBILITY RIGHTS TOWARDS IMPLEMENTING THE PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES ACT 2003 25-27 June 2012 Presenter: Liston Kirui Manager, Research & Consumer Education Consumer and Public Relations Division Communications Commission of Kenya

2 Content

3 Mandate of the Commission
The Communications Commission of Kenya (CCK) is the converged regulatory authority for the communications sector in Kenya. Regulate and facilitate development of the information and communications sectors including Broadcasting, Multimedia Telecommunications Postal and Courier Electronic commerce and; Manage country’s radiofrequency spectrum. Vision: Access to communications services by all in Kenya by 2030

4 ICT Sector Statistics About 4 million TVs, over 8 million radios
TV coverage : over 60 % of population Radio Coverage: over 80% of population Internet: 3,296,975 subscribers 8,884,850 users (CCK, Q2-2011/2012) Mobile phone: 24,968,891 subscribers Fixed line (Terrestrial and Wireless) : 385,107 subscribers (CCK, Q2-2011/2012)

5 Promoting Accessibility to ICT’s- Legal and Legislative framework
Constitutional and legal basis for accessibility by PWDs include: Article 7 (3) (b) providing that: The State shall - …promote the development and use of …other communication formats and technologies accessible to persons with disabilities. Implementation of rights and fundamental freedoms under Article 21 (3) in the Bill of Rights. All State organs and all public officers have the duty to address the needs of vulnerable groups within society, including …persons with disabilities….

6 Constitutional …../2 Article 27 (4) on equality and freedom from discrimination which provides that: The State shall not discriminate directly or indirectly against any person on any ground, including …disability…. Article 54 (1) stating that: A person with any disability is entitled–– (c) to reasonable access to all places, public transport and information; (d) to use Sign language, Braille or other appropriate means of communication; and (e) to access materials and devices to overcome constraints arising from the person’s disability. Article 260 defining disability thus: “disability” includes any physical, sensory, mental, psychological or other impairment, condition or illness that has, or is perceived by significant sectors of the community to have, a substantial or long term effect on an individual’s ability to carry out ordinary day-to-day activities;

7 Accessibility in International Law
Articles 2 (5) and 2 (6) inviting the application of international legal standards i.e the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) seeks to further entrench accessibility by PWDs into the constitution. Preamble (v) of CRPD recognizes the importance of accessibility to the physical, social, economic and cultural environment, to health and education and to information and communication, in enabling persons with disabilities to fully enjoy all human rights and fundamental freedoms”.

8 Defining Accessibility of ICTs by PWDs
The Global Initiative for Inclusive ICTs (G3ict) defines accessibility as “a measure of the extent to which a product or service can be used by a person with a disability as effectively as it can be used by a person without that disability.” This means accessibility of ICTs as derived from the Constitution and as ought to be applied within the ICT framework, comprises largely of PWDs Perception of relevant ICTs; Understanding relevant ICTs; and Experience in the operation of ICTs.

9 The role of ICT’s ICTs provide unprecedented potential for PWDs to participate in the economic and social life of the communities and ENABLE them access the following opportunities among others: E-Commerce. Tech-preneurship. Social participation. Formal and continuing education. Effective advocacy Networking

10 Challenges Facilitating Accessible Communication Services and Equipment
Lack of awareness about various disabilities and their special requirements Low levels of literacy (Education) High Costs of adaptive ICT hardware and software coupled with financial constraints by PWD’s Lack of ICT training specific to PWD. Inadequate research data and information Low levels of literacy: normally, people can only use ICTs if they are already literate (able to read, write and undertake basic calculations). Exorbitant Costs: most of the available adaptive ICT hardware and software are very expensive. Since poverty and disability are closely related, such products are unaffordable by most PWDs. Lack of ICT Training: ICT curricula have not been designed with PWDs in mind. Inadequate Data: research conducted on the use of ICTs in the country has not captured the issues and interests of persons with disabilities. For example, the National Population Census of 2009 did not capture the ICT needs of persons with disabilities.

11 Challenges Facilitating Accessible Communication Services and Equipment…../2
Lack of Awareness of Adaptive ICTs among ICT Service Providers and PWD’s Absence of clear intervention strategies at all levels (Government, Stakeholders) Access of ICT infrastructure in rural areas Lack of awareness and use of accessibility standards in the design of ICT products, services and information dissemination tools e.g. Websites and other communication products and services. Providing solutions acceptable by all Lack of Awareness of Adaptive ICTs among ICT Service Providers. Absence of clear intervention strategies by government. Majority of PWDs live in rural parts of the country not covered by available ICT infrastructure. Web designs that are incompatible with some assistive technology products. Web designs that do not accommodate keyboard only inputs. Not everyone can use a regular keyboard and mouse. For those unable to use the mouse, websites that are not keyboard compatible are a huge barrier to access.

12 Challenges Facilitating Accessible Information…../3
Provisions of copyright law which restrict production of original material in alternative formats without permission from authors. Basic learners have a linguistic challenge in the use of available adaptive software. Locating and accessing potential beneficiaries of the services

13 CCK’s Initiatives CCK launched Ksh. 32m ICT project for people with disabilities, 200 Equip eight institutions for special needs persons with ICT facilities (computers with assistive software and assisive devices for the visually impaired and the deaf. St. Lucy Secondary school (Meru), Kibos Secondary School for the Blind (Kisumu), Thika High School for the Blind (Thika) Kuja Secondary School for the Deaf (Rongo) Rev. Muhoro Secondary School (Nyeri), Mombasa Secondary School for the Physically Handicapped (Mombasa) Joyland Secondary School for the Deaf (Kisumu) Machakos Technical Training Institute.

14 CCK’s Initiatives…../2 Launch of the Persons with Disability Web portal, 10th May 2012

15 Objectives of PWD Web Portal
Objectives of portal Provision and promotion of information for potential users of the PWDs portal. Sharing of information, news, job opportunities, best practice and other items relating to the activities of Persons with Disabilities

16 Objectives of PWD webportal
Provision of a downloadable library of resources including factsheets, publications (internal and external). Provision of online booking/registration forms for training/networking events and conferences. Providing members with private password to access resources and information such as training materials, meeting minutes and restricted data. Provision of web links to partners and other appropriate sites for Persons with Disabilities (PWDs).

17 CCK’s efforts in addressing Challenges
Acknowledge challenges experienced by persons with Disabilities in accessing, purchasing and using ICT’s Held workshop on May 2012 Theme: E-accessibility for Persons with Disabilities ( or ) Appreciated Challenges and identified relevant interventions required to facilitate and promote access to ICT’s for PWD’s by accessing recommendations made in promoting accessible Communication Services (Mobile and Fixed Line, Internet) Information (libraries and tele-care centers) Broadcasting services and Equipment Postal and Courier Services Websites ICT education, Financial information and services and; Role and Importance of research and accessibility standards

18 Accessible Tools, Software and Applications in the Kenyan Market…/1
Windows 7 (Operating System) Microsoft office (Application) Jaws (Screen reader) MAGIC (a low vision screen magnifying software) Open book (an optical character recognition software Mobile Speak and Mobile Magnifier (Applications for use on Mobile Phones to enable persons with Visual Disability access and use phone)

19 Accessible Tools, software and Applications in the Kenyan Market…./2
Sara (a scanning and reading appliance). Braille displays (which enable PVDs to get computer output as virtual Braille on a panel). Topaz, Onyx magnifiers, the pearl camera (which is a scanner that works with Openbook to provide accurate high speed scanning) Bookshare: Access to thirty thousand books and magazines on various subjects, and is offered in formats persons with visual Disability

20 Accessible Tools, software and Applications in the Kenyan Market…./3
Equipment Embossers: printers that produce Braille dots paper Encourage the development of applications for use by Persons with Disabiliites

21 Promoting Accessible Communication Equipment in Market
Encourage the sale of communication equipment that facilitate purchase and Usage by PWD’s e.g. Number Pads. Buttons should be well separated from one another and protruding to enhance ease of navigation. Publication of accessible ICT equipment, software and tools Create environment that would facilitate sale of affordable ICT equipment, software and tools

22 Promoting Accessible Communication Services
Mobile and fixed line service providers Physical access to communication service providers by PWD’s (As stipulated in Section 8 Kenya Information and Communication- Consumer Protection Regulations, 2010) Improve visibility of characters on airtime scratch cards Scratch Cards.

23 Mobile and fixed line service providers…/2
Encourage the development of communication services for persons with disabilities by Recommending sale of assistive devices in the market. Telephone Relay services for persons with disability (e.g. live sign language interpretation or text to speech conversion of normal calls)

24 Promoting Accessible Postal and Courier Services
Section 41 Postal Charges Exemption: The Act exempts from postal charges - All printed and recorded literature, articles, equipment and other devices for the use of persons with disabilities which are sent by mail within and outside Kenya; and All aids and orthopaedic devices for persons with disabilities sent outside Kenya by mail for repair: All the aforesaid items that are for personal or registered PWDs institutions and are recommended for this exemption by the National Council for Persons with Disabilities.

25 Promoting Accessible Postal and Courier Services…../2
Currently being Implemented by the Postal Corporation of Kenya Encourage Courier Operators to provide services for PWD’s

26 Promoting Accessible Broadcasting Services and Equipment
Television : Provide Closed Captioning on television for the benefit of Deaf persons. Remote control buttons with visible writings for people with low vision. Remote control Buttons with Braille for people with total visual disability. Remote controls with audio feedback for buttons pressed. Braille on TV buttons. Verbalise whatever is written is shown on the screen.

27 Captioning Captioning: real-time on-screen transcript of dialogue
Useful for hearing impaired, but also e.g. for non-native speakers Captioning service can be provided remotely or on-site

28 Promoting Accessible Broadcasting Services and Equipment…../2
Radio: Provide Well separated and clearly labelled buttons on the remote control for both persons with low vision and those with no vision at all. Remote control with audio feedback. Radio buttons with Braille signs. Start up and shut down tones. Operational manuals in Braille, large print and audio formats e. g. CDs. Speech-to-text conversion to a screen

29 Promoting Accessible Broadcasting Services and Equipment…../2
Ageing Disabilities For the elderly, it can be difficult to follow the dialogue on the radio or on TV because it appears to flow too quickly. Main method of making radio programmes accessible is to adjust electronically the natural silence periods in the dialogue, and thus to make the dialogue appear to be slower. Valuable to add ‘audio descriptions’ to television programmes which help the viewer to follow the story line in the pauses in dialogue Radio programmes available via Internet with several speed adjustment options may help aged listeners to understand the programmes

30 Promoting Accessible Information and Websites
In coordination with other sectors of government develop: Accessible e-government web sites as per W3C-WAI standards and promotion of accessible private web sites Accessible electronic documents across all areas of government Accessible emergency communications for disaster management

31 Research and Accessibility Standards for ICTs
Research to determine the unique accessibility needs of persons affected by these various disabilities.

32 Accessibility Standards for ICTs - ITU
Study Group 16 - Lead study group on telecommunication/ICT accessibility for persons with disabilities Joint Coordination Activity on Accessibility and Human Factors - JCA-AHF ( ITU-T study groups 12 ad 13 work on accessibility

33 Accessibility Standards for ICTs – ITU…./2
ITU-T Study Group 2 work on human factors Question 4/2 - Human factors related issues for improvement of the quality of life through international telecommunications ITU-D SG 1 Question 20/1 "Access to telecommunication services for people with disabilities"

34 Accessibility Standards for ICTs – ITU…./3
ITU-R – wireless technologies enhance accessibility to people with disabilities and avoid their exclusion. ITU-R DTTB Handbook - Digital terrestrial television broadcasting in the VHF/UHF bands – cover captioning and closed captioning Recommendation ITU-R M Wireless communication systems for persons with impaired hearing

35 Accessibility Standards for ICTs …./4
ISO 9241 Series Of Standards (Ergonomics of human-system interaction: Parts: 20, 129, 151, 171, 400, 410, 920) Telecommunication Accessibility Checklist Telecommunication Accessibility Guidelines

36 Accessibility Standards for ICTs – ITU…./5
Include PWDs in the standards development process (Consult CCK or KEBS) Raise awareness among disability organizations and standards bodies, about which are the relevant standards, what categories, and who are the people involved

37 Accessible ICT’s Education For PWD’s
Undertake training/education needs assessment Avail education materials in appropriate formats accessible by PWD’s (E.g. Audio recordings, Braille printouts, electronic text, tactile drawings, audio descriptions) Introduce standards into the education system, in particular train PWDs

38 Accessible Education of ICT’s For PWD’s…/2
Avail appropriate assistive devices and Communication infrastructure in learning institutions Training of teachers/faciliators on needs and trends in ICT’s for Persons with Disabilities.

39 Accessible Financial Information and Services
Currently persons with visual disabilities can only access banking services with sighted assistance. The following measures could considerably address this limitation: ATMs should be made accessible through buttons with Braille for input and a screen reading capability for output. The writings on the ATMs should have clear contrasts for persons with low vision. Increase the font size of bank papers (banking slips, cheque books, etc.) for the benefit of persons with low vision. Limited access to financial information and services = limited capability to access, purchase and use communication services

40 Promoting Accessible Communication Services- Other Strategies
The antidiscrimination or equality provisions approach The universal access and service approach There is need to create greater awareness among persons with disabilities about the available tools & initiatives to promote universal access to public ICT services. Funding: Raise resources, both human and financial

41 Disability Mainstreaming at the Commission
Development and Implementation of Disability mainstreaming Policy Recruitment Internship (Recently had 1 intern at the Commission) Access to Office Facilitates Staff awareness Corporate social responsibility Facilitate Access to Information (CCK Website Project)

42 Conclusion Demand for Communication Services and Equipment will spur growth and Innovation in sector Commission to implement recommendations of E-accessibility Workshop For Persons with Disabilities Commission to submit sectoral contribution in development of proposed guidelines Commission will participate in appropriate Committee on professional guidelines on accessibility for PWD’s once set up

Thank You!

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