by Karen Fishwick, Committee Member for Accessibility
We have accessibility cards!
I thought it would be good if everyone knew what these look like and what they were for, so we can all help each other.
There will be times when another member may ask you to do something to help them, such as give up a priority seat in a programme room or to look at someone when you talk so they can lipread. It is therefore important that everyone understands the convention ethos around this.
Our policy is to believe people when they tell us they need something, because of health or disability, with no proof required. Nobody needs to tell us, or another member, about their health or medical conditions or explain why they need something, just let us know what you need.
However, as a disabled person, I know that in wider society we are not always believed, particularly if our disability is invisible. We hope that our convention community does better than that and that you can play your part.
To aid communication and to help people feel confident in asking for what they need, we have put together accessibility cards.
These are optional, but we think some people might find them useful.
We have wording for 22 different cards and they can be written on to personalise further.
These are not intended to be a visible badge, you can keep them in a pocket or bag. Anyone can use them if you think they will be helpful, you don’t have to be, or consider yourself to be, disabled.
We do have some visible badges to signal that someone is lipreading, but we also have an accessibility card for this, so people can chose which way works for them.
Of course you may have an access need that we haven’t thought of perhaps even one we can’t meet. Please do read the access policy to help understand what we can and can’t do and get in touch if you have any questions.
The cards are designed to be durable and can be reused. You can keep them and use them, if you would find that helpful, or return them to Ops at the end of the event and we can reuse them at Telford next year.