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ITU panel “Globalization of Standardization and Making the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) Accessible” at the 18th Biennial TDI Conference “Where Access begins”
Washington DC, USA, 30 July - 1 August 2009 Contact: tsbworkshops@itu.int
Introduction
TDI will host an ITU panel at the 18th TDI Biennial Conference (TDI, formally known as Telecommunications for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Inc.), in Washington DC, from 30 July to 1 August 2009. TDI is an active national advocacy organization focusing to address equal access issues in telecommunications, media, and information technologies for four constituencies in deafness and hearing loss, specifically people who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, late-deafened, or deaf-blind.

The ITU panel at the conference presents the accessibility efforts underway at the International Telecommunication Union.
Objectives
The panel will review the ITU accessibility activities underway in response to the Resolution 70 (“Telecommunication/information and communication technology accessibility for persons with disabilities”, World Telecommunication Standardization Assembly - Johannesburg, 2008). This first ITU-T resolution on Accessibility is a very significant one as it addresses telecommunications/information and communication technology accessibility for persons with disabilities. The WTSA-08 Resolution 70 gives ITU-T the ability to develop resources to support accessibility efforts.

One of the most important aspects of the work currently being done at ITU is not only the work carried out in the Standardization Sector (ITU-T) on standardization but also the work of making ITU accessible to persons with disabilities.

ITU seeks to become accessible itself, and at the same time, encourage participation by persons with disabilities so that Sector Members (manufacturers, operating agencies, regulators, etc.) and Member States will include accessibility and Universal Design into standards from the very beginning. As a result the implementation of standards with accessibility features will have a higher level of accessibility than ever before.

The presentations will explain the activities of two other activities in the field of Accessibility: the Joint Coordination Activity on Accessibility and Human Factors (JCA-AHF) and the Internet Governance Forum Dynamic Coalition on Accessibility and Disability (DCAD). Other proposed activities include the creation of a new internship program for persons with disabilities to work within the ITU-T accessibility program.

The panel will also include the history of what has already transpired since the last presentation given to TDI in 2003 by ITU Representatives.

Finally, the panel will also present on the impact of the United Nations Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities (adopted in New York, on 13 December 2006).
Information and Documentation
Andrea Saks, ITU Convener, Joint Coordination Activity on Accessibility and Human Factors (JCA-AHF), Coordinator, Internet Governance Forum (IGF) Dynamic Coalition on Accessibility and Disability (DCAD),
TDI Representative to ITU
asaks[at]waitrose.com

Cynthia Waddell, Juris Doctor - Executive Director and Law, Policy and Technology Subject Matter Expert, International Center for Disability Resources on the Internet, ITU Consultant on Accessibility
Cynthia.Waddell[at]icdri.org

Alexandra Gaspari, Ph.D in Political Science - International Relations and Human Rights,
Secretariat for the Joint Coordination Activity on Accessibility and Human Factors (JCA-AHF) and the Dynamic Coalition on Accessibility and Disability (DCAD),
Telecommunication Standardization Bureau, Geneva
Alexandra.Gaspari[at]itu.int
TDI website: http://www.tdi-online.org

 

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Updated : 2009-06-16