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In Person Panel/Talks/Programme Rooms
- We will have at least one wheelchair/scooter space marked in each programme room, and ensure that the layout has space for a mobility scooter to manoeuvre.
- We will have seating in any area where there is likely to be queueing and a volunteer to ensure that those who need to sit are still able to access the activity/panel.
- We will mark some seats as reserved for those who need to sit or who need to be in a specific area e.g., close to the front for sight or hearing, and close to the back for anxiety or other needs.
- Staging or platforms may be used to improve visibility of participants in program items. Where these are used a step free method of access will be made available.
- We will use microphones for speeches, readings and panels.
- Please let us know in advance if you would find a hearing assistance system (Induction loop or Infrared) or BSL interpretation of benefit via the registration form or by emailing the access team.
- We aim to have mobility scooters available, depending on the provision in the town or city the venue is in. This will need to be prebooked via the registration form or by emailing the access team. We may ask you to contribute to the costs of this.
- We have written an access audit to provide specific access information about the venue. Please do read this to get a better idea of venue and nearby facilities.
- We will provide a map and signage at the venue to aid navigation. Signage will aim to be clearly legible, considering font size/type and background colour contrasts.
- We aim to ensure that publications, particularly program information is available online in a variety of formats.
- Large print paper publications may be available, particularly for program information, but it is likely to be impractical for the souvenir guide to be available in other formats. Please let us know if you would like this via the registration form or by emailing the access team.
In Person Social Spaces
- We have seats in all social spaces and space for mobility scooters and wheelchairs to manoeuvre.
- We will aim to provide a Quiet Room at the venue to allow you to take a break from the convention and quietly reenergize yourself with minimal distractions.
- We ask all of our attendees to refrain from applying scented products while in the convention spaces, including in the toilets. It is fine to wear scented products, but please apply them in your own hotel room or outside.
Gender Neutral Toilets
- We will have at least one toilet that is designated gender neutral (in addition to the accessible toilets), but it is dependent on the venue to allow this.
- We do not police who uses which bathroom and expect our attendees not to do so either. We expect people to use the bathroom that makes them comfortable and respect others need for privacy. We also understand that young children or others who need assistance will need to be in the same facility as the person assisting them.
- We recognise that not all conditions are visible and trust our attendees to make their needs known without having to disclose medical information or “proof”. This means that we do not use a visible badge or sticker to indicate access needs, however we are happy to provide a card that allows this to be communicated without verbal explanation. Use of this card is entirely optional. Attendees may choose to use the sunflower lanyard as an alternative.
Allergies & Food
- We are not planning to provide food directly. We do not intend to introduce known allergens to the venue without being clear to our attendees. If you have an allergy (food or otherwise) or dietary requirement and would like this information passed on to party hosts, launch organisers or to the hotel, we are happy to do this. If the allergy relates to your hotel bedroom or included breakfast rather than the function rooms, we ask that you contact the hotel directly. Please let us know on the registration form or by emailing the access team.
- We understand that childcare is an access issue and aim to provide crèche facilities for those who need this. This will need to be prebooked via the registration form or by emailing the access team.
- We will have a child/family friendly programme stream.
- We recognise that breast-feeding a baby is a normal activity and does not need to be hidden away.
Communication & Social
- We aim to have a visible way of indicating that you do not like being approached and that you do not wish to be engaged in conversation by people you don’t know such as a slicker, badge or lanyard.
- We aim to provide pronoun stickers, but to make them optional.
- We will look at the need for interpreters in British Sign Language, depending on the demand and available budget. If this would be helpful for you, then please do prebooked via the registration form or by emailing the access team.
- We will have a “New to Eastercon” meetupp (everyone welcome) to ensure those who are feeling nervous or want to ask questions have an informal opportunity to do so and to facilitate meeting new people.
- We will ask that any time alcohol or food is available there should be a soft drink option as well. This will apply to parties and launches.
- We will have a hybrid programme which allows virtual attendance. This facilitates international access as well.
- We will look at the options of captions/subtitles on live and recorded online content. Please contact us if you would benefit from this.
- We aim to use software that is likely to be familiar to many attendees. Also to give people an opportunity to use software that they might be unfamiliar with prior to the event.
- We intend to provide written instructions and ideally a video demonstration of how to access virtual programming.
- We aim to have more than one way of accessing tech support, in case attendees are not able to access a particular platform.
- We intend to record online content, where appropriate, to allow this to be viewed later. We will ensure that attendees at the hotel know which rooms/programme items are being recorded.
- We intend to provide a social space online in addition to a formal programme. This would not be recorded.
- Our Code of Conduct will apply to online spaces and direct messaging as well as in physical places.
- We will have a bursary for people who would struggle with the financial cost of attending as well as a low-income membership rate. We will specifically invite applications from underrepresented groups. The details and restrictions of this are covered on the Bursary page.
- We will put together a policy regarding covid, if it is appropriate, closer to the time.
- You can find out information about the accessibility of the venue and the surrounding area in the access audit.
- If you need anything else that we have not mentioned here please do contact us and let us know.
- Karen Fishwick is the committee member for Access, you can contact her via email on email@example.com