Redefining the cost of access: financial equity in the Deaf Community

07.11.23 2:25pm - 15m

The Deaf and disabled communities are among the poorest in regard to financial wealth, or having healthy finances. Unemployment is high, and access to financial information poses multiple barriers. Yet there is untapped value. The sign language economy is estimated to be worth 3 billion in the U.S. alone. There are 430 million Deaf people in the world. How much of this value/potential goes straight to the community? Practically nothing.

The open payments system suggests a revolution in how we can take the agency into our hands. But when we are talking about financial inclusion - we need to think about access to language to gain access to information, community networking, and capacity building that includes trust and knowledge.

This session will outline how we can think about community partnerships, especially in terms of capacity building, and how we can think ahead in creating opportunities for underrepresented communities and how they can become active participants in community wealth creation. How can the open payments systems principle disrupt the current model, by eliminating the ‘banking’ gatekeepers in transactions? How can we assign community agency to data? How can financial equity impact and shape accessibility?

This talk will lay possible avenues for the future of financial inclusion, equity, and access from the perspective of the Deaf community, if we are aiming for a world that is equitable, how do we get there and not leave anyone behind?