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The work of ITU in promoting ICT Standards for Accessibility

International Telecommunication Union Workshop “ Accessibility to ICTs ” , Shanghai, China, 23 July 2010. The work of ITU in promoting ICT Standards for Accessibility. Wisit Atipakayoon, Advisor, Regional office for Asia and the Pacific, ITU Alexandra Gaspari,

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The work of ITU in promoting ICT Standards for Accessibility

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  1. International Telecommunication Union Workshop“Accessibility to ICTs”, Shanghai, China, 23 July 2010 The work of ITU in promoting ICT Standards for Accessibility Wisit Atipakayoon, Advisor, Regional office for Asia and the Pacific, ITU Alexandra Gaspari, TSB Accessibility Coordinator Officer

  2. Agenda ITU Overview Accessibility and Standards and the Work of ITU-T e-Accessibility and the Work of ITU-D Planned Activities and Invite for Partnerships

  3. Overview of ITU

  4. Founded in 1865 Leading UN Special Agency for ICTs HQs in Switzerland ITU Overview Three sectors (ITU-T, ITU-D, and ITU-R) 4 Regional Offices & 7 Area Offices 192 Member States; and 750 Sector Members ITU-D Established to help spread equitable, sustainable and affordable access to ICT. ITU-R ITU-T Managing the international radio-frequency spectrum and satellite orbit resources ITU’s standards-making efforts are its best-known – and oldest – activity. ITU TELECOM Brings together the top names from across the ICT industry & ministers and regulators for a major exhibition, a high-level forum & a host of other opportunities

  5. ITU Asia-Pacific Region Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific: Bangkok, Thailand Area Office for South East Asia: Jakarta, Indonesia The offices serve for 38 Member States and 68 Sector Members Fiji Marshall Islands Micronesia Nauru Tonga ITU Asia-Pacific Low-Income States (10) The Rest (10) LDCs (13) D.P.R. Korea India Indonesia Mongolia Pakistan Philippines Sri Lanka Vietnam Timor Leste Australia Brunei China/Hong Kong Iran Japan Malaysia New Zealand R.O. Korea Singapore Thailand PNG Afghanistan Bangladesh Bhutan Cambodia Lao, PDR Maldives Nepal Myanmar Kiribati Samoa Solomon Is. Tuvalu Vanuatu SIDS (11)

  6. Key Areas of work of ITU • Bridging the digital divide • Stewardship of the radio spectrum • Adopting international standards to ensure seamless global communications and interoperability • Building confidence and security in the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) • Use of ICTs to mitigate the detrimental effects of climate change • Emergency communications • Accessibility

  7. Accessibility and Standardsand the Work of ITU-T

  8. Some numbers Statistics Worldwide • More than 650 million people with disabilities in the world (Source: UN) • 80% of persons with disabilities live in low income countries (Source: UNDP) • Low income countries, 90% of children with disabilities do not have access to school (Source: UNESCO) • Among people living below the poverty level, 1 out of 5 is a person with disability (Source: World Bank)

  9. Accessibility and Standards • Standards describe how equipment interacts and defines the quality necessary for media to be usable for all. This is particularly relevant for accessibility features • In accessibility, standards should also describe suitable methods of media delivery for people with disabilities, and are therefore essential for the provision of services accessible for all • Standards are created wherever the critical mass of participants can be assembled

  10. ITU-T and Accessibility • ITU first to start accessibility studies in 1991 • Since then, many other standards (i.e. Recommendations) have been written for accessibility and for mainstreaming accessibility within telecommunication/ICT systems. • ITU-T has seen the work on accessibility increase over the recent years. It should be noted that the ITU-T has been promoting accessibility with the concept of “Total Communication” and the principle of “Design for all” since 2000 – with its Recommendation ITU-T F.703. • These two elements promoted the concept of Universal Design enshrined in the Convention, eight years before its adoption by the UN. • The Standardization Sector of the International Telecommunications Telecommunication Union - (ITU-T) has been seeking to become accessible within itself in line with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD).

  11. WTSA-08 • In 2008, the World Standardization Telecommunication Assembly (WTSA-08) built on the momentum for mainstreaming accessibility and addressed • the need for advancement on standards for accessibility and • the need to include persons with disabilities in the standards making process • This milestone text is the Resolution 70 “Telecommunication/information and communication technology accessibility for persons with disabilities”

  12. ITU-T Resolution 70 • to work collaboratively and cooperatively with other standardization organizations and entities, in the field of accessibility • to work collaboratively and cooperatively with disability organizations in all regions to ensure that the needs of the disabled community are taken into account in all standardization matters • to consider the development of an internship programme for people with disabilities who have expertise in the field of ICTs, to build capacity amongst people with disabilities in the standards-making process • to create a disability coordination point within ITU-T to assist the Director of ITU-T in reporting the findings of the review of ITU-T services and facilities

  13. ITU-T and the Joint Coordination Activity on Accessibility and Human Factors (JCA-AHF) Objectives: • to assist ITU-T Study Groups on how to provide accessibility for persons with disabilities in standards • helping to increase awareness on accessibility and human factors • The JCA-AHF invites recognized organizations and individuals with experience in accessibility and human factors to share best practices and join the work • How to participate:

  14. Study Groups & Questions • There are two specific Study Groups that have specific Accessibility and Human Factors responsibilities. • The first one is: ITU-T Study Group 2 (Operational aspects of service provision and telecommunications management), parent study group of the JCA-AHF. Study Group 2 has a specific Human Factors group, namely Question 4/2, Human factors related issues for improvement of the quality of life through international telecommunications. • Question 4/2 covers more than just the needs of persons with disabilities: usability for all covers the needs of children, the elderly and persons who may or may not have a disability.

  15. ITU-T Study Group 16 (Multimedia coding, systems and applications)lead study group on telecommunication/ICT accessibility for persons with disabilities • Question 26/16 is the group specifically designated to deal with Accessibility to Multimedia Systems and Services for persons with disabilities. • Q26/16 is responsible for developing (or assisting in the development of) multimedia technical standards addressing accessibility needs of persons with disabilities. • It also reviews accessibility features included in telecom standards developed in other Study groups. • ITU-T is launching this year under SG16 a Focus Group on Accessibility, in order to group a standardization experts working on how to make ICTs accessible. More information will be available at:

  16. ITU-T Recommendation F.703 “Total conversation” • A Total Conversation service is an audiovisual conversation service providing bidirectional symmetric real-time transfer of motion video, text and voice between users in two or more locations • This gives the user the feel of real-time communication, just like voice or video systems that transport streaming media over IP • It has uses for people who are not only deaf or disabled but people who can’t communicate in either of the two mediums or do not have the command of the spoken language used

  17. Total Conversation puts the user in the center of the communication society Text, Sign & CaptionRelay Services Users with Total Conversation or Real-time text Devices user with communicationdisability Voicetelephoneusers Emergency services 112, 911,...

  18. Real-time text, video, voice is desirable for all. Desirable for everyday calls and in the workplace. Essential for emergency calls Multimedia is essential for people with disabilities Example: A deaf-blind woman in a Total Conversation call, producing sign-language and receiving text.

  19. ITU-T Recommendation F.790“Telecommunications accessibility guidelines for older persons and persons with disabilities” • It intends to provide general guidelines for standardizing, planning, developing, designing and distributing all forms of telecommunications equipment • The goal is to ensure the accessibility for people with the widest possible range of abilities

  20. Telecommunications Accessibility Checklist • It is a living list/technical paper that should be used at the beginning of the standardization process • It provides a set of reminders for standards writers in the area of ICTs and accessibility • It helps to ensures that services and features are designed and are usable by as many individuals as possible with different abilities • It should be applied to every work item before the work commences, during the work and at the completion of the work

  21. ITU-T, IGF and DCAD Dynamic Coalition on Accessibility and Disability Aim The Internet Governance Forum’s Dynamic Coalition on Accessibility and Disability, will facilitate interaction between relevant bodies, and ensure that ICT accessibility is included in the key debates around Internet Governance in order to build a future where all sectors of the global community have equal access to the Information Society. ITU-T sponsors the IGF DCAD with: website support. a secretariat a DCAD coordinator Captioned conference calls Organizes the workshops on Accessibility for IGFwith the expertise of DCAD members

  22. ITU Standards are Free • Since beginning of 2007, ITU-T Recommendationsare available without charge. • With only a small number of exceptions all in-force ITU-T Recommendations are available in PDF form at:

  23. ITU-T Recommendations and References • V.18 - harmonization of text telephony • V.151 - text relay end-to-end connection of analogue PSTN text telephones over IP • T.140 - the general presentation protocol for text conversation • T.134 - text conversation in the T.120 data conferencing environment • H.323 - Annex G for text conversation in H.323 packet multimedia environment • H.248.2 - gateway procedures between Text Telephony in PSTN and real-time text in IP H Series Sup.1 - Video communication requirements for sign language and lip reading • E.121 - Pictograms, symbols and icons to assist users of the telephone service • F.910 - Procedures for designing and selecting symbols, pictograms and icons • E.135 - Human factors aspects of public telecommunication terminals for persons with disabilities • E.136 - Specification of a tactile identifier for use with telecommunication cards • Y.1901 IPTV requirements that include accessibility features mainstreamed in the recommendation

  24. Conclusions • Bringing Accessibility into the standards work requires efforts from ITU and its Membership • Standards are not enough because without Implementation, we do not have Accessibility • Without Universal Design being used from the very beginning of the standard making process, Accessibility implementation becomes expensive with retro refitting • ITU-T is opening and look forward to new opportunities for academia, research bodies and persons with disabilities to participate to the accessibility standard work.

  25. ITU Accessibility Events in 2010 • Joint WIPO-ITU Accessibility WorkshopGeneva, Switzerland, 2 - 5 February 2010 • ITU workshop on Accessibility to ICTsExpo-10, Shanghai, China, 23 July 2010 • DCAD workshop on “From Athens to Vilnius: beyond the UN Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities”IGF, Vilnius, Lithuania, 14 – 17 September 2010 • DCAD - EBU workshop on “Can mobile ‘Apps’ create a new golden age of Accessibility?”, IGF, Vilnius, Lithuania, 14 – 17 September 2010 • Joint ITU-EBU Workshop “Media access to all”, Geneva, Switzerland, 24 – 25November 2010 • World Standard Cooperation (ITU, ISO, IEC) Workshop on Accessibility and ICTs,Geneva, Switzerland, 3 – 5 November 2010

  26. e-Accessibility and the Work of ITU-D

  27. WTDC-10 World Telecommunication Development Conference • Serve as forums for free discussion by all concerned with the Development Sector. Results are reported and new projects are launched. • Set the agenda and the guidelines for the following four-year cycle, while the Regional Conferences review "work-in-progress" towards the overall objectives and ensure that goals are met. World Telecommunication Development Conference 2010 (WTDC-10) ITU Fifth WTDC took place in Hyderabad, India from 24 May to 4 June 2010 Adopted Hyderabad Declaration and Hyderabad Action Plan (HAP) for ITU-D activitied to be implemented in the coming 4 years i.e. 2011-2014 For outcomes of the WTDC-10, please visit:

  28. ITU-D Objectives • The Hyderabad Action Plan (HAP) for 2011 – 2014 identifies six (6) objectives of the Telecommunication Development Bureau (ITU-D) for the next coming 4 years. • One of the objectives relates to Persons with Disabilities Objective 5 To build human and institutional capacity in order to improve skills in the development and use of telecommunication/ICT networks and applications, and to foster digital inclusion for people with special needs, such as persons with disabilities, through awareness raising, training activities, sharing information and know-how and the production and distribution of relevant publications.

  29. ITU Development Programs (2011-14) Information and communication infrastructure and technology development Programme 1 Cybersecurity, ICT Applications and IP-based network-related issues Programme 2 Enabling Environment Programme 3 Capacity Building and digital inclusion Programme 4 Least developed countries, countries in special need, emergency telecommunications and climate change adaptation Programme 5

  30. ITU Development Programs (2011-14) Programme 4: Capacity Building and Digital Inclusion • To assist the membership in developing and implementing national strategies, plans, policies and practices to achieve digital inclusion for people with special needs, including fostering accessible telecommunications/ICTs, such as making assistive technologies available for PwDs, and ensuring basic ICT literacy training and use of telecommunications/ICTs for economic and social development, poverty reduction and wealth creation • To support the membership in providing greater availability, development and usage of local content, languages and corresponding websites for people with special needs, taking into account accessibility for persons with disabilities • To raise awareness among governmental and private-sector decision-makers on the importance of digital inclusion for people with disabilities

  31. ITU-D Study Group 1: 2011-2014 WTDC-10 maintained two study groups and determined the Questions to be studied by them. Among Questions adopted at the conference, one Question is related to Persons with Disabilities Study Group 1 Chairman Roxanne McElvane (USA) Vice-Chairmen Regina Fleur Assoumou (Cote d’Ivorie) Blanca Gonzales (Spain) Muwaffaq Abu Aqola (Jordan) Kirill Balov (Uzbekistan) Nguyen Quy Quyen (Viet Nam) • Study Group 1 • Question 20-1/1 – Access to telecommunication services and information and communication technologies (ICTs) by persons with disabilities

  32. WTDC Resolution 58 (Rev. Hyderabad, 2010) Access to ICT by Persons with Disabilities, including persons with age-related disabilities • Invites Member States to: • Ratify the Convention on the Rights of PwDs and to take the relevant measures to effectively make ICT services, equipment and software accessible to PwDs; • Develop national laws, regulations, policies, guidelines or other mechanisms for ICT accessibility for PwDs under the principles of equal access, functional equivalence, affordability and universal design, by taking full advantage of available tools, guidelines and standards; • Collect data on ICT accessibility by PwDs, in a disaggregated manner, aimed at creating e-accessibility statistics and – in the near future – relevant indicators that contribute to the policy-making process; • Consider introducing ICT accessible services for PwDs such as telecommunications/relay services (hearing and speech disabilities), accessible websites, public phones with accessibility features (e.g. volume control, information in Braille), public schools, institutions and community centres with various accessible equipment including screen readers, Braille printers, hearing aids, among others

  33. WTDC Resolution 58 (Rev. Hyderabad, 2010) Access to ICT by Persons with Disabilities, including persons with age-related disabilities • Invites Member States to (cont’d): • Encourage and enable active participation by PwDs, both as individuals and as organizations, in the policy-making process for ICTs and related areas where ICTs have an impact, by ensuring that the consultation process, meetings and/or surveys are accessible to participation by persons with disabilities; • Promote and undertake research and development of ICT accessible equipment, services and software, with emphasis on open-source software and affordable equipment and services; • Envisage establishing a programme that considers ICT accessibility priorities, to be periodically reviewed in order to ensure its relevance to the specific local conditions of a country/region, with a view to progressive implementation; • Mainstream ICT accessibility for PwDs, which involves taking into consideration accessibility principles in a cross-cutting manner; • Consider exemption from taxes and customs duties on ICT devices and assistive equipment for PwDs, in accordance with the national regulations on this matter; and, • Establish ongoing and permanent collaboration between developed and developing countries in order to exchange information, technology and best practices related to ICT accessibility for PwDs

  34. e-Accessibility Toolkit ITU/G3ict launched “e-accessibility Policy Toolkit for Persons with Disabilities - • ITU jointly with ESCAP and various partners organized the “Asia-Pacific Regional Forum on Mainstreaming ICT Accessibility for Persons with Disabilities” on 25-27 Aug 2009 in Bangkok, Thailand • The event welcomed some 140 participants from 21 countries, including policy makers, regulators, operators, industry representatives, NGOs and disabled persons organizations, as well as experts and ICT professionals including disabled persons from across the region and beyond

  35. Planned Activities and Invite for Partnerships

  36. ITU-D Invites Partners to … • Develop and update tools and guidelines for use/reference by Member States in mainstreaming ICT accessibility issues in their national/regional policies and regulations, and provide the necessary capacity building; • Identify and document examples of best practice for accessibility in the field of telecommunications/ICT for dissemination, sharing of experiences and provision of information among ITU Member States and Sector Members; • Hold seminars, symposiums or forums for policy-makers, telecommunications regulators and Sector Members at which ICT accessibility policies are presented and discussed, and also to promote the elaboration of books, reports or literature that address ICT accessibility for PwDs; • Collaborate and cooperate with relevant United Nations entities and disability organizations in all regions in order to generate awareness of the need for the design and implementation of policies or self-regulatory approaches that will make ICTs accessible for PwDs

  37. ITU Asia-Pacific Planned Events in 2011

  38. ITU Accessibility websites More information: ITU-T accessibility portal Joint Coordination Activity on Accessibility and Human Factors (JCA-AHF) Dynamic Coalition on Accessibility and Disability(DCAD)

  39. Thank you! For more information, please contact: Wisit Atipakayoon, Advisor, ITU office for the Asia and the PacificEmail: wisit.atipakayoon@itu.intTel.: +662 574 8565 Alexandra GaspariTSB Accessibility Coordinator Officer Email: Tel.:+41 22 730 5158

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