Over the last year, the APLE Campaign to address the digital divide has gained traction and has taken action in a variety of setting to amplify the voices of people with experience of Poverty. APLE Collective members have published a briefing paper, hosted a Webinar seeking to find solutions to the Digital Divide and published an accompanying fact sheet. In the last year, APLE Collective members have written blogs about the APLE Digital Divide Campaign hosted by Church Action on Poverty, Just Fair, Good Things Foundation, Policy Press and Community Organisers. APLE Collective members have published a book ‘Socially Distanced Activism’ with Policy Press about the work of the Digital Divide Campaign and hosted a webinar book launch chaired by Baroness Ruth Lister, president of the Child Poverty Action Group.
In the short term, we believe that steps can be taken to tackle this digital divide by:
- Encouraging the telecommunications industry to lift the data caps on a pay as you go and rolling pay monthly tariff.
- Making mobile ‘hot spots’ available free of use and accessible to all.
In the longer term, we ask for participation, voice and connection.
- We ask for free Wi-Fi for Low-Income Groups.
- The opportunity to discuss how people with lived experience of socio-economic disadvantage and who directly face this challenge of digital division are able to ensure support packages to build skills, knowledge and confidence are designed to best effect.
APLE Campaigning on the Digital Divide has involved writing to MPs, meeting online with MPs and linking with key partners such as The Good Things Foundation, Operation WiFi and Local Trust to amplify the voices of people with lived experience of poverty within wider campaigning on the digital divide. Our work was recognised by the UK Parliament Awards, as Digital Campaigner of the Year.
The campaigns sub-group have focussed on campaigning on the digital divide. The work of the sub-groups has included research for fact sheets and briefing papers, stakeholder mapping and participatory campaign planning alongside writing to MPS, meeting with MPs, liaising with APPGs and presenting at a wide range of conferences.
“Being part of the APLE Campaigns sub- Group has been inspirational. The collective effort and skills that lead the Digital Divide Campaign were so effective at highlighting and challenging the real issues that poverty brings and engaging people in strategic positions with the problems and potential solutions.
It seemed all about speaking out and asking to be listened to. I witnessed the power of the collective voice and how, if we come together, we can challenge inequalities and help create change, brilliant stuff!”
Our participatory Webinar:
APLE Digital Divide Briefing Paper:
Our Digital Divide Blogs:
- A fair society means options for all: APLE Collective reflect on digital choice and opportunity. (Just Fair UK)
- COVID-19 RISKS EXACERBATING THE DIGITAL DIVIDE- Community Organisers.
- A Personal Reflection on The digital divide and how it affects us all (Expert Citizens)
- Digital Exclusion: Feeling Anxious, Under Pressure, and Bored- ATD Fourth World
- Hartlepool Action Lab- Digital Exclusion