How did iDEM advocate for accessibility during the European elections?

How did iDEM advocate for accessibility during the European elections?

12/06/2024 admin

The campaign for the 2024 European elections started in May, and information about political parties and participation in democracy was available on different online platforms. As the European Disability Forum has shown, much of this information is not accessible to people with disabilities, as websites and the language used are not adapted to the needs of millions of citizens. This fact is a major barrier to political participation, which is an international right. Without accessible information, millions of disabled and elderly Europeans as well as EU migrants have been excluded from this month’s European elections.

What has iDEM done during the European elections campaign? 

The past month has been very busy for our iDEM project, as we have travelled all over Europe to talk about accessibility and democratic participation for people with language difficulties. Our mission is to raise awareness of the barriers that millions of people face when accessing information and sharing their opinions.  

International events on accessibility and participation 

We started with an event in Barcelona, Spain, to celebrate Global Accessibility Awareness Day on 16 May. We shared with the Accessibility Innovation Network of Catalonia how Artificial Intelligence (AI) can support people who have language difficulties by providing accessible information. 

A week later we were in Málaga, Spain, for the international EmpoderaLIVE event, focused on making technological spaces globally accessible and encouraging citizen participation. There, we discussed how the iDEM platform and App that we are developing will make information more accessible through the use of automatic subtitles, text-simplification technology and adapted user interfaces. That same week we also shared iDEM with the Panhispanic Plain Language Network in Madrid, Spain, focused on promoting plain language as a democratic value. 

To finish our participation in awareness-raising events prior to the European elections, we went to the United Nations’  World Summit on the Information Society event in Geneva, Switzerland, where we explained the importance of making text-simplification and accessibility tools available for all. 

We are looking forward to future elections where people with disabilities, migrants, and elderly citizens will be able to use our technology to access information and share their voice! Stay tuned for all our updates!