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Access To Telecommunications

Access to Telecommunications for people from Non English Speaking Backgrounds with Disability

Telecommunication services provide vital connectivity and participation for people with disability. However people from Non English Speaking Backgrounds (NESB) with disability face a number of barriers to accessing affordable telecommunications services, and information on specialist equipment and programs.

Access the NEDA fact sheet here.

Improve telecommunications consumer rights for people from NESB with disability

NEDA believes consumer rights for people from NESB with disability can be improved by:

  • More information on telecommunications contracts in community languages
  • Free access to telephone interpreting services prior to signing contracts
  • Upfront information on contract terms and pricing  and  provide clear opt out and cooling off periods, particularly for consumers with low English proficiency.
  • Training on disability and NESB needs to providers and decision makers.
  • Provide relevant communications aids and equipment in community languages, such as alphabet and symbol boards Ensure that all new telecommunications equipment and services are accessible to all Australians.

Other Documents:

Communicating Difference: Understanding Communications Consumers from Non English Speaking Backgrounds (NESB)

One in four telecommunications consumers in Australia is from a Non English Speaking Background (NESB). While this group of consumers is large, there is very little policy development and research on what barriers are faced by these consumers and what mix of services might best meet their needs. As the telecommunications landscape rapidly changes in Australia, there is a strong need for improved understanding of the needs of Australia’s diverse communications consumers.

Communicating Difference Report

Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy - Household Assistance Scheme  

NEDA HAS letter to DBCDE