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10 Tips for Making Meetings Inclusive and Accessible

Image MeetingIt is important to ensure that you plan that your training, meetings and conferences are accessible to all attendees. Some of the aspects of planning for these events include choosing a site, promotion, registration, presentations, liaising with attendees and the preparation of handouts.  Those with responsibility for planning your events must ensure that equal access to the venue and physical environment is considered and that the information being presented is available in accessible formats.

If you are new to the area of accessibility or you would like to ensure that the meetings and events you host are inclusive, here are ten tips that can help you improve accessibility:

  1. Understand your audience! Because no two-disabled people experience their disability in exactly the same way, it’s important to know who the audience is.
  2. Make sure all presentations are accessible. It will be important to discuss with each presenter, prior to the meeting, the importance of developing a presentation that will be accessible to all participants.
  3. Ensure the needs of people with hearing impairments are met. Any conference material that includes an audio component should have a text version accompanying it.
  4. Find out if any assistive listening devices will be used by the participants to improve the auditory reception of speech or sound information.
  5. Provide oral or electronic descriptions/maps of meeting room layouts, emergency exit locations, and amenities prior to the beginning of the conference/meeting.
  6. Offer to make available reports, agendas, slides, or other materials in alternative formats.
  7. Check for adjustable lighting in the meeting rooms. This will be particularly important for individuals with low vision.
  8. Reserve seats in the front row(s) and keep these available for persons with disabilities. Ensure mixed seating is made available.
  9. Allow for adequate space for wheelchairs and companions in meeting rooms.
  10. Include personal assistants and interpreters in the estimated number of participants when planning conferences and meetings that include meals.

If you need further information on planning to make your meeting or events accessible, please do not hesitate to contact one of our team on 01-4151285 or e-mail [email protected]