• ACRI

Making the Government ID System Accessible to People Living in Poverty


Illustration
© Dmitriy Feldman, Dreamstime.com

The government identification system is an online system that provides access to a variety of government services, such as: filing small claims through an online court system (Net Hamishpat), viewing credit information from the Bank of Israel, changing an address, and checking the issuance of restraining orders from leaving the country.


A condition to logging in to many different systems requires signing up to the system by identification, through two out of four possible methods: identification card, passport, oleh certificate, or credit card. Asking for two methods of identification out of this list does not allow people who live in poverty to sign up for the system, since most people in poor populations do not often have a passport or credit card.


Together with the Civil Litigation Clinic in Haifa University, we appealed to the Government ICT Authority in the Prime Minister’s Office, demanding that the government identification system be made accessible to populations in poverty. In the appeal, Attorneys Reut Cohen from the Clinic and Maskit Bendel from ACRI argue the great importance of making these systems accessible, as they make it possible to benefit from various rights and receive crucial information. They further mentioned that as these systems are becoming digitized online, it is the duty of the Authority to examine their accessibility relative to the needs of the various populations, and to design them accordingly. Part of this includes outlining a future mechanism that will be inclusive to populations in poverty in the design and assessment of the online systems. This matter is crucial in order to prevent violations of human rights, and exclusion against people living in poverty from information systems and various services.