Joe Tibbetts is the publisher and managing editor of I-D Information Daily; Public Service Digital and Healthcare Innovation Monitor. He has advised numerous public sector organisations on their communications.@joe_tibbetts
Around 20 million people in UK lack the skills, confidence and/or access necessary to get on line and complete the many transactions that make modern life possible. Getting online improves employment prospects, health, happiness and engagement with society. The Tinder Foundation team looks past the inspirational stories to find the hard data that shows just how essential their work is.
Around 20 million people in UK either don't use the Internet or use only a tiny handful of sites. The Tinder Foundation helps around 250,000 of these digitally excluded each year.
Digital exclusion, being unable to access or lacking the skills/confidence to use the Internet, contributes to long-term unemployment, poor health, social isolation and a multitude of missed opportunities. Working to ensure that people are able to get online and access the Internet with confidence in a world where more and more transactions (including essential transactions between citizen and government like tax returns, claiming pensions, managing personal health budgets or simply renewing a prescription) take place online is clearly a strategic imperative for local and devolved government.
And yet a significant number of elected representatives in local Government have poor or no digital skills themselves. Helen Milner will take the INCLUSION debate by the horns at Better Connected Live. It makes sense to be there.