DIGITAL ACCESSIBILITY FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES

DIGITAL ACCESSIBILITY FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES

 

The Internet Society Sri Lanka Chapter together Internet Society Asia Pacific Region organized the “Digital Accessibility for Persons with Disabilities” at Cinnamon Grand Hotel in March 2017.

Internet Society Sri Lanka Chapter is a front runner in Sri Lankan Internet Arena from its establishment from the year of 2010. ISOC has conducted many Internet related events, forums, and projects to uplift the standards of living of the people of the Country.

Accessibility is one of core areas that ISOC is concerned in the path to the Next Billionth User. The issues of under connected and unconnected ISOC found that community with disability a hidden area of interest of many activities in the Internet arena. So the Accessibility for the Internet for All is being one of the major topics on ISOC Sri Lanka’s agenda.

During the past ISOC reached persons with disabilities carrying trainings and the attempt is highly appreciated all around the globe. Thus ISOC APAC invited the Sri Lanka Chapter to jointly organise “Accessibility Sri Lanka 2017 “with following objectives.

  • Built capacity of developer’s community on needs and requirements of persons with disabilities.
  • Built capacity of developer’s community on approaches and design practices that would make their services and products accessible.
  • Invite persons with disabilities to speak and share on their accessibility challenges.  Share  best  practices  learned  from  experiences  of  the  local  stake holders  including persons with disabilities.
  • Hear  from  local  stakeholders  including  government  on  their  current  familiarity  and approaches on digital accessibility.
  • Strengthen cooperation and enhance partnerships among organizations working to address common challenges of digital accessibility.
  • Recommend approaches for strengthening policies, institutions and actions.

It was a one day program with two mini-events covered during the day.

The first half of the day was a technical workshop on accessibility, bringing in developer’s community and persons with disabilities for a face-to-face interaction and Accessibility guidelines and design principles (with practical demonstrations / Videos). President of Internet Society Sri Lanka Chapter, Ms. Sagarika Wickramasekara and Director of Asia Pacific Internet Society, Mr. Naveed made presentations. Ms. Manique Gunaratne of The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon ICT Training and Disability Resource Centre conducted the training on “Difficulties faced by persons with disabilities with solutions and design considerations and international standards when surfing the internet”.

The second half of the day was a multi-stakeholders dialogue on digital accessibility issues and solutions.

Discussions were on Technology Issues faced by persons with disabilities including results of 100 top local websites accessibility assessment.

The panelists were Secretary to Ministry of Telecommunication and Digital Infrastructure Mr. Wasantha Deshapriya, Mr. Harsha Wijewardane from University of Colombo, Director of Internet Society Asia Pacific Region Mr. Naveed, President Internet Society Sri Lanka Chapter Ms. Sagarika Wickramasekara, Secretary of Internet Society Mr. Maheeswara Kirindigoda, Ms. Manique Gunaratne of The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon ICT Training and Disability Resource Centre, Major Manjula De Silva from the Sri Lanka Army and Mr. Isuru Sampath.

 

Picture descriptions for vision impaired persons:

1 Participants at the evening session.

2 Group photograph of the morning session.

3 Internet for all banner.

4 Manique with the pannalists at the head table.

5 Manique making a presentation in the morning session.

6 Manique Sagarika and Naveed preparing the programme on the previous day.

7 Manique speaking at the evening session.

8 Manique with the participants.

9 Participants in the morning session.

10 Naveed presenting.

11 Sagarika presenting.

12 Wasantha Deshapriya speaking.

 

Manique Gunaratne

Council Member – Cisco Networking Academy Council

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