COAA: Hosting Events - Accessibility Considerations

There are some common things you can assure:

  • The venue is accessible for individuals with mobility issues and the tables/chairs are arranged to allow a scooter or wheelchair to maneuver easily
  • Close proximity to accessible restrooms
  • Information on accessible parking and accessible pathways to the venue included in your marketing materials
  • Clear signage for restrooms, accessible pathways, etc at the event site
  • No table skirts - they interfere with mobility equipment
  • Don’t offer peanuts!
  • Ask your caterer to have information posted next to each dish that lists contents or at minimum highlighting common allergens contained in the dish 
  • Make sure to budget for accommodations. The most expensive would be if someone requests ASL interpretation or CART services (Communication Access Realtime Translation). For budget purposes, use $90/hr for each interpreter or $150/hr for CART. If your event is over 30 mins, you will need two ASL interpreters. Costs may fluctuate, but these are good amounts for budgeting purposes. For more information regarding services for hearing related disabilities, contact the Student Disability Access Center

You can require that requests for accommodations are received at minimum 7-10 days before the event is scheduled. This allows you an appropriate amount of time to create the accessible materials or find the required services.

There are a number of other things to be aware of when hosting events. The Mid-Atlantic ADA group has an online resource that will be very helpful.

More information on venue accessibility and other considerations for Planning Accessible Meetings and Events at UVA can be found on the UVA ADA Coordinator’s web site.


Common language for your marketing materials for those events not requiring registration:

It is important to let your audience know that you are creating an inclusive event. Below is sample language which may be included in your marketing and communication materials:

In an effort to provide the most comfortable experience for all attendees, please refrain from the use of scented products. (Not necessary if your event is an online event!)

Our goal is to make this event as inclusive as possible. Should you require accessibility accommodations please contact... (the contact should be you or someone directly involved with the program)...by xxxx date (this should be at least one week before the event).

If you are providing ALS interpretation or CART services by default, be sure to make this known in your materials!


Common language for events requiring registration:

Asking participants at the point of registration if accommodations are needed gives a realistic understanding of the level and type of services needed. The following information should be included on the registration form:

CREATING AN INCLUSIVE EXPERIENCE:

  • In an effort to provide the most comfortable experience for all attendees, please refrain from the use of scented products. (Not necessary if your event is an online event!)
  •  
  • Should you require accessibility accommodations please use the form below indicate the services you will need. Our goal is to make this event as inclusive as possible although we cannot guarantee we will be able to provide all possible accommodations. This information must be received by xxxx date (this should be at least one week before the event). For more information, contact...(the contact should be you or someone directly involved with the program)...

ACCESSIBILTY ACCOMMODATIONS:

Will you require accommodations to attend the workshop? (This is a required answer – YES or NO)

No, I do not need any accommodations.

Yes, I will require accommodations as indicated below.

  • CART Services (Communication Access Realtime Translation)
  • ASL Interpreter
  • Workshop materials in accessible format:
    • E-text
    • Braille
    • Large print
  • A personal attendant will accompany me.
  • Other accommodation requests: (provide an open text field)

(If you are offering food)

DIETARY RESTRICTIONS:

  • Vegetarian
  • Vegan
  • Gluten-Free
  • Lactose-Free
  • Kosher
  • Other: (provide an open text field)
  • Please list any food allergies: (provide an open text field)

For additional information on hosting events with accessibility in mind, feel free to contact the UVA ADA Coordinator, Melvin Mallory, the Director of the Student Disability Access Center, Barbara Zunder, or the Coordinator for Academic Accessibility, Lori Kressin