In an ideal world, everyone is able to attend your meeting or event. But planning accessible meetings and events can seem like an overwhelming task. No worries, we’ve got you. Here’s a handy checklist to prepare for your upcoming on-site venue visit.
Good access to your meeting or event means that more people can (and will) attend. Besides being a legal requirement, it's best practice to remove barriers for disabled people. And all of this starts long before booking your meeting venue.
When preparing accessible meetings, asking the venue sales representative is merely sufficient. Too often, meeting venues simply 'forget' that there might be small areas within the facility that are inaccessible to some users. On-site visits to meeting venues help you foresee barriers for persons with a wide range of disabilities.
Think of those heavy doors that some people might find hard to push and pull. Or those doors with springs that automatically close. Or the toilet that's barely big enough for a wheelchair to turn around.
“Feeling welcome to an event starts with accessibility. Often, I can’t even get into the venue at all because there are stairs or thresholds. It’s easy to solve this with a ramped board, but many venues don’t have that yet.”
– Claire (Meetingselect), who uses an electric wheelchair.
Often, these things fall under the radar. But when the meeting is in full action and you have disabled participants struggling to participate this is not good. All the more reason to check your accessible venues upfront.
Planning accessible meetings and events doesn't stop with the meeting room itself. Consider the surrounding factors that might have an impact on your disabled participants travelling to and from the venue.
Truly accessible venues have:
Some venues and hotels are more accessible than others. You might have some control over things like registration and check-in desks, but there are variables you definitely need to check when visiting the venue for the first time. These include:
Depending on the type and size of your accessible meeting or event, you might have social activities going on. You want to ensure that meals and functions, such as receptions, are accessible to participants with disabilities.
Curious to know more? Stay tuned for Part 2 next week. In the meantime, don't forget to book a demo