Report on children with disabilities in the digital environment (2019)

TWO CLICKS FORWARD AND ONE CLICK BACK- Report on children with disabilities in the digital environment (2019)

disabled children and the digital world

Despite a considerable body of evidence on how, why and with what impact, children are engaging in the digital environment, there remains a dearth of information about the experiences of children with disabili- ties. In order to rectify that gap, the Council of Europe commissioned a study involving children in 6 coun- tries (Belgium, Germany, Republic of Moldova, Portugal, Turkey, United Kingdom) to explore their views on how their rights were realised in relation to: access to the digital environment; impact on education, health, play and recreation; safety and protection; opportunities for increasing involvement in decision-making. The research employed a child-rights based, participatory approach, supported by four advisory groups of chil- dren with, respectively, intellectual, physical, hearing and visual impairments. The data was gathered through focus group discussions in each country, involving 79 children in the partner countries and 18 in the advisory groups (97 in total).

The findings indicate that although, in many ways, their digital and online lives are very similar to those of children without disabilities, there are a number of distinct and important differences with implications for policy makers and service providers at all levels.

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