BEREC

Public consultation 07/10 on ensuring equivalence in access and choice for disabled end-users of eCommunication services

Run from 11 October to 26 November 2010

In the revised Regulatory Framework for eCommunications and in particular in Article 23a of the Universal Service Directive (USD), the legislator introduced the notion of ensuring equivalence in access and choice for disabled end-users of eCommunication services. In that respect BEREC considered as useful the provision of additional information on the subject to the National Regulatory Authorities (NRAs) responsible for implementing this legal text. In that BEREC drafted a consultation paper on  ensuring equivalence in access and choice for disabled end-users of eCommunication services, which provided a number of examples and best practices already existing in the EU Members States.

Nevertheless BEREC was of the opinion the NRAs could benefit also from more extensive knowledge relating to that measures by collecting additional information from all interested parties via a public consultation.

Therefore, this consultation was conducted with a view to finalising and publishing a BEREC paper for the purposes of providing enhanced information to NRAs with respect to the implementation of Article 23a of the USD.

The objectives of the public consultation are the following:

·      to present information gathered from the NRAs regarding the current measures in place in the EU Members States;

·      to present the preliminary views of the NRAs with respect to assessing and implementing the equivalent access and choice, and

·      to seek the views of interested parties including consumers, end-users with disabilities, representative organisations, and service providers on the topic.

Within the public consultation BEREC received 11 individual contributions as follows (listed in alphabetical order of the name of the contributors):

ANEC, BT, ETNO, Omnitor, Phone Ability, SFR, Sorenson, TAG, Telecom Italia, Telefonica and Vodafone.

The summary of the comments received during the public consultation and explanation how they were reflected in the final BEREC paper can be found in can be found in the BEREC report of the public consultation on the draft BEREC paper on ensuring equivalence in access and choice for disabled end-users of eCommunications.

The final BEREC Report on electronic communications services: ensuring equivalence in access and choice for disabled end-users can be consulted here.