ASEAN endorses framework to promote accessibility for all in digital broadcasting
Jan 05, 2021

JAKARTA, 23 December 2020 – The ASEAN Ministers Responsible for Information (AMRI) endorsed the Framework for Promoting Accessibility for All in ASEAN Digital Broadcasting on 14 December.

The Framework provides guidelines for ASEAN Member States (AMS) to promote broadcasting access services, namely Closed Captions; Audio Description; and Sign Language for all groups of people, including the vulnerable population, such as persons with disabilities and senior citizens. The guidelines aim to enhance cooperation on, development of, and commitment to broadcasting access services among AMS.

Recognising that it is crucial for all groups of people to receive accurate and timely public information, especially in times of crises and natural disasters, the framework was introduced as the concept “Accessibility for All” by Thailand at the 4th and 5th Senior Officials Meeting Responsible for Information Working Group on ASEAN Digital Broadcasting, held in Bangkok in July 2018 and July 2019.

The concept refers to the above-mentioned broadcasting access services, which will create opportunities and reduce barriers for all groups of people, enabling them to gain access to broadcasting content.

Moving forward, three key stakeholders, government; broadcasters/private sector; and people and civil society, will be engaged to promote and implement broadcasting access services in AMS. The framework and its implementation will help ensure that people have access to information and content, and that broadcasters and media organisations will fulfil their responsibility in providing broadcasting services to all groups of people. The framework will also ensure the realisation of ASEAN as an inclusive and resilient community.

Moreover, the Framework was built on the shared goals of the Sustainable Development Goals, the ASEAN Vision 2025 for building an inclusive and resilient community, measures to promote a high quality of life and equitable access to opportunities and to protect human rights, as outlined in the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community Blueprint 2025, and the overarching message of “ASEAN: A Community of Opportunities for All”, enunciated in the ASEAN Communication Master Plan II (2018-2025).

The Framework will be one of the outcome documents of the 15th ASEAN Ministers Responsible for Information (AMRI) meeting, to be hosted by Thailand in February 2021.