For this year’s UN International Day of People with Disabilities (the 3rd of December), the UN General Assembly decided to set a special thematic: “Sustainable Development: The Promise of Technology”. The Romanian Federation of NGOs for Child (FONPC) together with its member organisations issued a joint position tackling the role of technology for the social and educational inclusion of children with disabilities.
FONPC believes that although the recent technical developments and means could be an important factor favouring the social inclusion and the access to education for children with disabilities, these children continue to face barriers when it comes to accessing and using these technical means. Some of these difficulties are cause by, for instance: the lack of information on the technological offer existing on the market and targeting their needs; the opportunity to obtain financial support exists but is not easily accessible due to overwhelming bureaucracy.
FONPC and its members issued several recommendations such as: (1) further information should be collected on the needs and barriers of children with disabilities when accessing technology – especially since children with disabilities are the most likely to drop out school; (2) special manuals for the personnel assisting children with disabilities should be made available in order to facilitate their assistance; (3) reducing the bureaucratic pressure when asking for financial support for access to technology.