On November 12, AGENDA-Disability Rights Advisor Tolhas Damanik participated as a resource person in the focus group discussion (FGD) on “Identifying Strategic Issues and Priorities for the Indonesian Chairmanship of the ASEAN in 2023” organized by the Ministry of Communication, Information, and Technology of the Republic of Indonesia. Participants included government officials representing several directorates under the ministry and civil society representatives including SIBERKREASI, a national movement on digital literacy. Participants discussed topics surrounding the efforts to increase digital literacy, create a safe online space and promote fact-checking to combat misinformation and disinformation on social media. In his presentation, Tolhas explained that advances in digital technology have broadened positive impacts on the lives of persons with disabilities. For example, persons with disabilities can take advantage of entrepreneurship opportunities and utilize e-commerce avenues to promote and sell their products online from their homes. However, several aspects of digital technology remain inaccessible such as websites and online platforms that prevent persons with disabilities from enjoying their right to information and technology. Therefore, to promote the accessibility of digital technology, Tolhas delivered several recommendations that include ensuring the participation of persons with disabilities in the planning and implementation stages, advocating for the harmonization of related laws and policies in information and digital technology to the ASEAN Enabling Masterplan 2025, particularly on the action point ASEAN Political-Security Community (APSC) 2 and ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) 15. These action points call for increasing the digital literacy of persons with disabilities and increasing the accessibility of government websites as well as other sources of public information.  

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