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The people who need services most are often the people who find them hardest to access.

People may not have a choice when using online services, so it’s important they work for everyone.

Digital inclusion helps us reach as many people as possible in our diverse community.

In 2018, the Australian Bureau of Statistics reported:

  • 4.4 million (just under 1 in 5) Australians living with disability
  • 3.9 million (about 1 in 6) Australians aged 65 years and over.

Permanent disability and changing abilities due to ageing can make it difficult to use digital services.

Examples of permanent disability include:

  • sensory – loss of sight or hearing
  • intellectual – difficulty learning or understanding
  • physical – restriction in physical activities
  • acquired – head injury, stroke or acquired brain injury.

But good accessibility practices don’t just apply to older Australians or people with a permanent​ disability.

All of us will have different needs at different times and in different circumstances.

Temporary impairments, or sometimes a persons current situation, can present similar difficulties as a permanent disability.

For example:

  • a broken arm or lost glasses
  • a short-term illness
  • sun glare on a mobile device making poor contrast text hard to read
  • people living in regional Australia who only have access to a slow internet connection
  • people using limited or expensive bandwidth
  • people using older internet devices that may not be running the latest software versions
  • people whose first language isn't English
  • people in a situational crisis - for example: needing emergency support.

Page last updated: 22 June 2021