Tuesday 17th December 2019
Our blind and vision-impaired communities are celebrating today, after years of campaigning alongside the Greens, that audio description will be made available on Australia's public broadcasters: the ABC and SBS.
Australian Greens Disability Rights spokesperson Senator Jordon Steele-John said there are more than 450,000 blind or vision-impaired Australians who are currently unable to enjoy television with friends and family, or reap the medium's educational potential.
"This is now finally beginning to change, with funding made available to our public broadcasters to implement audio description across their channels from 1 July 2020," Steele-John said today.
"Whilst this is a huge win for our blind and vision-impaired communities, it is disappointing to see that this government has not committed to requiring commercial free-to-air television stations to provide audio description as well.
"The commercial stations - Channel's Seven, Nine, Ten and Sky - are now on notice. The technology is readily available and cheap, and the community expects them to follow suit and make sure their content is accessible to blind and visually-impaired Australians!
"The Greens will continue to campaign alongside the community to make sure that free-to-air TV in Australia is accessible and inclusive for everyone."