Emergency Services Accessibility for Persons with Disabilities

Disability affects a high proportion of the population, but many countries still do not provide accessible emergency services. Limited communications options can leave persons with disabilities in particularly dangerous situations in times of emergency, especially since many emergency services are only accessible via voice call. The situation is nevertheless changing, as recent European Union (EU) legislation requires equivalent access to emergency services through emergency communications. What obligations must Member States abide by? What solutions are available to ensure access? This document explores the main legislation regarding accessible emergency services, including the 2018 European Electronic Communications Code and the 2019 Accessibility Act. It presents the functional requirements of effective solutions, including caller location, reliability, roaming, and call-back, among others.