Digital Exclusion

Members told us that as access to services and rights increasingly moved online, marginalised people and their organisations have become increasingly excluded. Members asked us to work with them to connect digitally excluded Londoners to highlight intersecting barriers to digital inclusion and rights to ‘in real life’ (IRL) alternatives.

The pandemic has shown how race, disability, poverty, domestic abuse, age, lack of privacy, insecure housing, immigration status and safety online etc., interact to create Digital Exclusion.

This historic emergency has also demonstrated the creativity, responsiveness, and flexibility of London’s civil society largely due to so many VCS being run by marginalised people and having incomparable connections into intersectional and under-heard communities.

Commissioned case studies

Thanks to the support of our funder Trust for London we are paying members to write up case studies, evaluations, briefings, create blogs, vlogs, toolkits, hacks, or content demonstrating good practice in getting intersectional and excluded communities online, using tech for good and examples when face-to-face IRL interactions are needed and digital won’t do.

HEAR’s 9th Digital Exclusion case study comes from Alliance for Inclusive Education:

Remote Education as set out in the Legislation

ALLFIE, the Alliance for Inclusive Education, is the only national organisation led by disabled people working on educational issues and, in particular, working to promote the rights of disabled students to be included in mainstream education (as set out in Article 24 of the UN’s Convention on the Rights of Persons With Disabilities). Under quaranting and cocooning ALLFIE wanted to know if remote learning was inclusive or discriminatory. ALLFIE and Disabled Students UK’s survey respondents identified five major barriers experienced in engaging in remote education that are detailed in their case study: adaptive and assistive technology, virtual platform accessibility, in-person support, and coursework and examination arrangements, alongside emotional wellbeing.      

ALLFIE has also produced recommendations from survey results, Lived Experience and good practice and legislative knowledge developed since ALLFIE was founded in 1990.

Further research is needed to investigate the whole area of developing and supporting inclusive remote education… [meeting] legal and human rights obligations and duties. The remote education research must…involve disabled pupils and students…
The same duty for all education institutions to arrange remote education…that is inclusive of all disabled students.
The courses that disabled students have enrolled onto will be provided in a different manner if remote education is an unsuitable method of learning for them.
The Department for Education’s statutory guidance clearly setting out who is responsible for making various aspects of remote education inclusive of disabled students under both the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) Accessibility Regulations 2018,and Equality Act provisions…
Government enforcement regarding education institutions with websites and virtual online platforms that fail to comply…
OFSTED and Office for Students and other inspection bodies must have the power to inspect remote education…
Department for Education must clearly set out that remote education should complement rather than replace face-to-face learning.
The Department for Education must publish inclusive remote education good practice guidance.” #RemoteEducation #ChallengingDigitalExclusion #7DeadlySins

The Chronic Illness Inclusion Project #RemoteRevolution case study was the 8th in the series. You can download below, and watch a video from CIIP founder via HEAR instagram


#AnotherTypeOfVirus from People First case study and video from learning disabled content creators to explain need for mutual aid and campaign for rights like accessible public health information.

#WorkingTogetherForDigitalInclusion from Parents and Communities Together (PACT) case study part 1, part 2 and part 3. Also available in google docs with animations made by particpants Section 1: Case Studies, Section 2: Learnings, Section 3: Kids’ Artwork

#MoreThanJustDevices Superhighways

Centre for Armenian Informations and Advice

Micro Rainbow

Chronic Illness Inclusion Project

Traveller Movement

7 Deadly Sins of Digital Exclusion

Before the pandemic we developed the #7DeadlySins of #DigitalExclusion with our members. It includes examples of how to overcome barriers to make sure all Londoners are part of the #DigitalRevolution. What do you think? Could this help you explain digital exclusion to stakeholders and statutory authorities? How could it be better? Do you have examples of good practice you want to share? Read the whole 7 Deadly Sins of Digital Exclusion or  👀images to the right

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