TasCOSS MEDIA RELEASE: Groups join forces to call for closure of Tasmania’s digital divide

Thursday 15 April 2021

The Tasmanian digital inclusion alliance* have joined forces to urge all political leaders to commit to policies and actions that improve digital access, affordability and ability to ensure no Tasmanian is left offline.

TasCOSS CEO Adrienne Picone said Tasmania was the most digitally disadvantaged state in the country, with more than 65,000 Tasmanians unable to participate online.

“The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the digital divide in our state that without urgent action is at risk of becoming even wider,” Ms Picone said.

“Access to digital services is essential for daily life, in the same way as electricity and water, and as the first state to see the full rollout of the nbn network, we should be making the most of the opportunities that digital technology brings.

“From remote schooling, to working from home or researching and applying for jobs, having access to devices and the internet has never been more vital.”

The Tasmanian digital inclusion alliance have prepared joint statement seeking commitments from all candidates and parties to a range of initiatives including improving Tasmania’s Australian Digital Inclusion Index score to at least the national average by 2025, introducing a telecommunications concession, and the provision of devices and dongles/data to all State Government school students from upper primary through to Year 12.

For more information, please refer to the 2021 State Election Joint Statement on Digital Inclusion.

INTERVIEWS: To arrange an interview with the following digital inclusion alliance signatories, please contact Lucinda Szczypior on 0438 280 486 or email Lucinda.

  • TasCOSS, TasICT, Beacon Foundation, The Smith Family, Carers Tasmania, COTA Tasmania, NILS Tasmania, Neighbourhood Houses Tasmania

VISION: Please find attached a high resolution image for your use.  This image is of a Seniors Week IT mentoring session and the volunteer mentor (R) is Gerald Engelbretsen.

Beacon FoundationCarers TasmaniaCouncil on the Ageing (COTA) TasmaniaNo Interest Loans Scheme (NILS) TasmaniaNeighbourhood Houses TasmaniaThe Smith FamilyTasmanian Council of Social Service and TasICT.

  • Lucinda Szczypior, 0438 280 486 or via email.