Planning Accessible Events
As a public entity, UConn has a responsibility to make all sponsored events accessible. Event planners and organizers should help to ensure accessibility for participants or attendees with disabilities. The guides below are intended to help event organizers consider engagement of people with and without disabilities in their event. Some sections of the below document provide requirements of events, and others are frameworks in making each event as accessible as possible.
If you have questions, please contact Office of Institutional Equity for support.
UConn Guidelines for Accessible Events
All University sponsored events either on or off-campus are subject to the accessibility requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.Whenever possible, events should be planned with accessibility in mind, including captions for audio recordings and live presenters or alternative dietary options for events with food. Attached is a guide for those planning events to work though in their planning process.
Accessibility Statement and Publicity / Marketing
An event accessibility statement must be provided in all publicity and pre-registration materials to ensure an opportunity for participants with disabilities to request accommodations and fully participate in the event or activity.
The event accessibility statement must include an event contact email and phone number and a timeframe to request accommodations to help ensure coordination of the requested accommodation(s). Event planners still have an obligation to make a good faith effort to fulfill a request on short notice or less than the number of days stated on the publicity material.
Event Accessibility Statement:
If you require an accommodation to participate in this event, please contact (INSERT SPONSORING DEPARTMENT CONTACT NAME) at (INSERT TELEPHONE AND EMAIL CONTACT INFORMATION) by (SPECIFIC DATE (suggestion: at least 5 days in advance)).
Pre-registration for an event provides an opportunity for event planners to provide important details about the event. A comprehensive description of the event, including location, parking, environmental conditions, services available, and lodging among other factors, will help participants determine what types of accommodations they may need to request. Event planners should be able to provide information regarding the distance between the parking area to the venue, the availability of transportation services, climate control, the availablity of assistive technology and dietary options. The more information a planner can provide upfront, the better prepared hosts and participates can be to provide a smooth and equitable expierence.
Responding to Requests
When a participant requests an accommodation, respond as quickly as possible. Event planners should discuss the needs on the individual and devise accommodation based on the stated barrier. Event planners should include provision for accommodations in their intial event budgets. Any questions about whether an accommodation request is reasonable, or general questions regarding accessibility requirements at events may be directed to the Office of Institutional Equity at 860-486-2943 or email@example.com.
Sign Language Interpretation and CART
Event planners should be prepared to provide accommodations for attendees or presenters who are deaf or hard of hearing. American Sign Language Interpretation or Communication Access Realtime Transcription (CART) is made available through the Center for Students with Disabilities (CSD). To request a sign language interpreter or CART for an event or program, please complete an Interpreter / CART Request Form with the University of Connecticut Interpreting Services (UCIS). UCIS will make every effort to provide the requested accommodation. Questions should be directed to the Interpreter Coordinator at 860-486-2020 (videophone 860-553-3243) or UCIS@uconn.edu.
Assistive listening devices are available upon request at different locations throughout University campuses. Individuals seeking assistive listening equipment are encouraged to contact a venue or event prior to arriving regarding availability. Event planners should be prepared to provide assistive listening devices upon request and test the equipment in advance of an event. For questions regarding assistive listening equipment contact the Center for Students with Disabilities at 860-486-2020 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Event planners must consider the needs of all individuals during an emergency, including those with disabilities. Event staff should be aware of the emergency evacuation procedures and understand elevators may not be available during an evacuation. An approved safe shelter should be identified and communicated to participants.