Independent Venue Week urges industry to check reopening plans against 10-point checklist to ensure Deaf, disabled and neurodivergent audiences/fans/consumers are not left behind.
Independent Venue Week is today calling on the UK’s insert relevant industry or ‘venues and events’ etc to check their reopening plans against a 10-point checklist published by the cross-sector Audience Access Alliance.
The Audience Access Alliance, founded by music and event industry accessibility charity Attitude is Everything, is made up of a cross-sector coalition of 13 disability and accessibility organisations and networks all united in working to remove barriers for audiences across the UK or in devolved nations.
Designed to apply to any venue or event, from football clubs and outdoor festivals to heritage sites, music venues, tourist attractions and theatres, the cross-sector 10-point list enshrines the key understandings and policies that need to be in place for reopening to be accessible for Deaf, disabled and neurodiverse people, regardless of the setting.
Accessible Reopening Checklist
Any venue or event reopening to the public should be able to say “yes” to these things:
- We agree that every person has the right to assess their own level of risk.
- People can find facts on our website about accessibility and COVID safety to make informed decisions.
- If we have tickets on sale, Deaf, disabled and neurodivergent people can arrange the access they need.
- No one is advised against visiting our event or venue.
- No one will be challenged about their ‘risk status’ at our entrance due to a perceived ‘vulnerability’.
- Attendees are not expected to bring a doctor’s note if unable to wear a mask.
- Our COVID safety measures are accessible for everyone.
- Our street furniture does not obstruct accessible parking or access routes for attendees or pedestrians.
- Our staff have been trained in disability awareness and understand our access provision and COVID-safety measures.
- We are committed to listening to Deaf, disabled and neurodivergent people and engaging with any new audiences gained online during lockdown.
“This brilliant initiative from the Audience Access Alliance is so important and timely. With events planning well underway and venues and promoters gearing up to open their doors again, these steps will help ensure consideration around open access for audiences across the country.
And because it’s designed for events of any scale at venues of any size, it means there is real opportunity for deaf, disabled and neurodiverse people to have access to arts and culture across the board.
We fully support the checklist and encourage others in the music and event’s industry to do the same.“
Sybil Bell, Founder, Independent Venue Week.