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Apr 8
2019
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Accessible corporate event

Full Access

By taking the right steps in planning and following guidelines every corporate event can ensure all attendees, including people with disabilities, can fully participate in meetings, events and presentations. During the early stages of planning send a survey to possible event attendees to allow them to list any special accommodations needed. The survey will allow you to become aware of mobility, visual, hearing and perhaps dietary needs that need to be addressed to allow inclusion for every event goer.

Mobility

Ask the venue for specifics on accessibility. Are certain entrances and hallways wider and easier to navigate with a walker or wheelchair? Will there be any remodeling or construction going on that may block the best entrances? If booking transportation to events, ask the transportation company if the van or bus can accommodate a wheelchair. Is the driver trained on lift operation?
Ensure extra space at the venue to allow for special mobility needs. How many spaces are needed so everyone can enjoy the speech or presentation?

Visual

Be prepared to arrange for presentation materials to be in a different format for those who are visually impaired. You may need to provide material with a large font or in braille. Will you need to provide headsets? Remember to format the directional signing about information to the meeting, too.

Hearing

To accommodate attendees who may be hearing impaired there should be a question on the survey about the need for assisted hearing devices or sign language interpreters. Sometimes an individual simply needs to be close to the stage to participate fully.

Dietary Considerations

Food allergies are common. Caterers and restaurants are used to special requests. Gluten free and vegan options on menus are growing. There is probably not a single dietary request or consideration that can not be accommodated.

Other Considerations

Allow extra transition time between events or activities for everyone to get settled and ready.
Plan for accessibility to the food and beverage areas.
If the corporate event is a multi-day occasion, ensure there are restaurants and stores nearby for after hours.
After the event is over review how the accessibility worked. Was there anything unanticipated? Keep a list of the event’s highs and lows, so you can modify for the next occasion.

Every corporate event attendee has the right to participate fully and equally. With a bit of surveying and planning a fun and fully inclusive meeting can be achieved.

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