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Jan 20, 2022

The Aged Need Devices and Internet

For digital literacy to have a far reaching effect, however, the conversation surrounding digital equity must also remain at the forefront. Digital equity in this context refers to older persons’ access to digital devices, access to affordable internet, and access to education. Ix-Chel Pott says Belize, as a nation, is a long way off from achieving this among the most vulnerable.


Ix-Chel Pott

Ix-Chel Pott, Executive Director, National Council on Aging

“So, older persons do have a challenge when it comes to affording certain things that we take for granted. I mean, who thinks about having a cell phone now, without having internet access? For an older person, something like that may really be a luxury, something that I can’t necessarily afford on my income. So, in the original concept we were looking at how we source these things. And, reaching out time and time again, what we heard at the Council is, “Oh, this isn’t an area of priority”. And it is also because, when we think about older persons and we think about service, we consider only certain things a priority. We consider oh, if I could give an older person a food basket that is a priority, if I could give some pampers that is a priority. And, those things are important, of course. But, if it is not a tangible service oriented thing, the things we conceptualize that an older person needs, then it is not important as such. And it is like anything that doesn’t fit what is our stereotypical view of an older person. So, we don’t think of an older person weightlifting, dancing, running marathons, and we definitely don’t think about older people becoming social media stars, influencers or wanting to do Tik-Tok videos or any of those things. We don’t think about those things, because that doesn’t fit into our concept of who an older person is. And because of those things, those ideas, mindsets, we find we are really just at the tip when we talk about digital equity.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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