Making Events Accessible

Johns Hopkins University strives to make all its programs and activities accessible to those who want to attend. This includes physical and programmatic access/accessibility. Accomplishing this goal requires coordination across campus, as well as the participation of those seeking an accommodation. However, primary responsibility for accessibility rests with the event organizer.

Scheduling Events

The university will make every effort to schedule all events open to the public or the university community in an accessible space. If for any reason a university event is scheduled in a space that is not accessible and the event organizer receives a request for an accommodation from an individual with a disability, the organizer must work with the appropriate space reservation office to find an alternate location that is accessible.

Physical access resources on making events accessible:

A Planning Guide for Making Temporary Events Accessible (link is external)

Planning Accessible Meetings and Events: A TOOLKIT (link is external)

Publicizing Events

Event organizers should place an accessibility statement in all materials announcing the event. This includes electronic communications such as email as well as print materials (e.g., posters, fliers, postcards etc.). The text must include the name and contact information for the individual to contact for accommodations. Suggested text is set forth below.

1.   Suggested accessibility statement (long version)

“Please contact___________ (event organizer) at _____ (phone and email) at least one week prior to the event to request disability accommodations. In all situations, a good faith effort (up until the time of the event) will be made to provide accommodations.”

2.   Suggested accessibility statement (short version)

“For disability accommodations please contact (event organizer) at _____ (phone and email).”

Interpreters and Transcribers

All event organizers are strongly encouraged to request CART for all large programs and events. If a request for American Sign Language interpretation or CART is received, the event organizer is responsible for arranging and paying for it.

List of Procurement approved resources for interpreting, transcribing and captioning

  • To enable sign language interpreters and transcribers to provide appropriate and adequate access for your event, please request program information from your speaker and provide it to the interpreter at least one week in advance. It is expected that last-minute changes will occur, and adjustments can be easily made. Please submit updated information as soon as possible.
  • Interpreters are part of your stage setup. Please remember to include a chair and, if appropriate, a music stand. Interpreters need to be placed near the speaker to ensure visibility. A wireless headset, connected to the speaker’s microphone, will enable the interpreter to hear the speaker more effectively.
  • Interpreters should be in a well-lit area and easily seen at all times. Keep in mind that when the lights are turned off, the participant who is deaf no longer has access to information.
  • CART providers should be seated in a location where they can best hear the speaker. A wireless headset, connected to the speaker’s microphone, will enable the transcriber to hear the speaker more effectively.

Seating

  • As often as possible, individuals who use wheelchairs should be able to sit comfortably with their friends, companions, and other participants. The setup of your venue may need to be re-evaluated to ensure access for all participants. Chairs may need to be removed to accommodate wheelchairs. If participants need to access the stage, a ramp or alternative access point must be made available.
  • Reserved seating areas for guests with low vision or those utilizing an interpreter should be located near the front of the audience area and in close proximity to the interpreter (if applicable). Unoccupied seats should be released when the program begins.

Making Event Materials Accessible

Event organizers are required to ensure that all materials for the event are available to be put in an alternative format upon request. Event organizers are responsible for contacting the Office for Institutional Equity in the event planning stage if they need assistance ensuring that all materials can and will be made accessible.

Large Print guidance is available at: Best Practices and Guidelines for Large Print Documents (link is external)