Applying for a grant, paying a tax or signing electronically are procedures that, despite being part of every citizen’s daily life, can become impossible missions for many of them. And not only for the most vulnerable.
In Spain, 83% of citizens do not complete the digital procedures they initiate with the administrations due to the high level of difficulty involved in understanding their language or the steps to be taken, and in procedures aimed at vulnerable people, 72% of them end up giving up the attempt, according to the study presented annually by Prodigioso Volcán. In addition, the Supreme Court has recently had to expressly request that judgments be adapted to simple language.
For all these reasons, this consultancy firm has sent a petition to the political groups contesting the 23-J elections, asking them to include the right to understand in their agendas, with the aim of breaking down barriers of understanding with the Public Administration.
The managing partner of Prodigioso Volcán, Mario Tascón, explains that other countries have regulated this issue while “in Spain it is completely abandoned”. He regrets that “year after year, the results are appalling. You receive a notification and you don’t know what it asks for, people don’t know how to manage certain procedures because the administrative language is obscure”.
One of the factors that has aggravated this situation has been digitalisation which, in Tascón’s opinion, “is leaving out a large part of the public. A greater gap has opened up”. For this reason, he believes that Spain “has not only failed to make progress, but has actually gone backwards”.
Prodigioso Volcán has submitted the petition through Demócrata, the newspaper specialising in parliamentary information, which Tascón recently joined as a minority shareholder.