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Read EASPD’s report on promising practices in use of technology for persons with disabilities in 5 different languages!

The report looks into examples of use of technology for persons with disabilities from the start of the COVID-19 pandemic across Europe.

Making the digital move during the beginning of the pandemic came with its own set of challenges. In order to identify these challenges and utilise the available digital tools, EASPD commissioned a study, ‘Promising Practices in the Use of Technology in Disability Services’ Response to COVID-19 Pandemic’. The study identifies organisations providing services to people with disabilities from across Europe and examines appropriate digital solutions they used during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The full study is available in English.

The Executive Summary of the study is available in Spanish, Italian, French and German.

The study involved interviewing managers and experts, professionals and specialists from organisations providing social care and support services for persons with disabilities from all over Europe. The focus was on asking questions related to the utilisation of technology in the lives of persons with disabilities with almost everything becoming digital due to the pandemic. Most respondents suggested that the use of technology was highly dependent on being able to train services users and staff in the use of digital tools and new online standards.

The research helped in explaining a wide variety of examples across different countries in Europe which revealed that there was no consistent use of technology to support persons with disabilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, this was often fundamental to organisations that had to move to home-based delivery of services.

The report also provides some useful suggestions for the future in order to make the digital transformation more suited to persons with disabilities. The most important factor is in fact, the understanding of digital transformation by each organisation.  Some other suggestions include: increasing education and training in technical aspects; more attention by politicians towards technical inclusion; more financial resources for service providers for people with disabilities.