Another note from abroad reminding us that the importance of accessing government information is recognized worldwide:
Title: Promise of technology is for everybody (By HESSA AL JABER)
Source: The Peninsula On-line: Qatar’s leading English daily, 5/17/2008
In article otherwise on technology for the disabled, the head of Qatar’s Information and Communications Technology had this to say about government information:
Because people with disabilities cannot participate in government processes or benefit from government services if they don’t know what government offers, ictQATAR looks forward to setting a timeframe in which all public government information is universally accessible. This will include information that the government provides through radio and television programming, kiosks, and websites. And I call upon other government entities to begin incorporating into their websites accessibility functions such as media players, specially designed web browsers, and other assistive technologies.
In the near future, ictQATAR will work to establish a Fund to offset the costs of both individual and organisational adoption of ICT to benefit the disabled. Although the details have yet to be fully developed, we expect that disabled individuals will apply for grants or vouchers to help pay for technologies and/or services that will enable them to benefit from the same opportunities as everybody else. Similarly, government organisations, corporations, and other organisations will be entitled to grants to encourage the universal provision of services and employment of disabled individuals.
To the extent the government’s goals are in line with the desires of Qatar’s people, we wish them well in their efforts to place government information online. For more information about Qatar, please see the US State Department’s Background Notes for Qatar, last published in July 2007.
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