Function Central have released a fantastic guide to help support event planners ensure inclusivity at their events in a post-Covid world, with guidance around accessibility at virtual events and more!
This guide covers important information such as:
- How Coronavirus impacted the events industry worldwide, but also led to innovations like virtual conferences and digital events capable of reaching global audiences.
- How events might look during (and after) the pandemic, and how event planners can ensure food hygiene, safety, and social distancing.
- Why it’s more important than ever to plan for inclusivity and accessibility (e.g. captioning, sign language interpretation, audio descriptions) – whether it’s an in-person, virtual, or hybrid event.
- Other useful disability awareness and event planning resources – found in the other chapters of the guide. You can access this here.
We are seeing a huge number of virtual and hybrid events, and with the current restrictions, this is likely to be the case for some time moving forwards. One of the advantages of virtual events is accessibility. Inaccessible physical venues are taken out of the equation, distance is not a problem and virtual events are often cheaper for attendees than their live counterparts. However there are still a lot of things to think about to ensure virtual events are as accessible as possible.
To make sure you’re organising a virtual event that’s accessible, the guide advises event planners to think about the following:
- Does the platform you’re using allow computer-based audio listening/speaking and phone-based audio listening/speaking?
- Have you factored in the costs of captioning, sign language interpretation, audio description or other accommodations into your budget?
- Have you prepared your speakers? For example, it’s common for each speaker to say their name before they speak each time.
- Have you checked that the presentation materials are accessible? For example, text should be high-contrast and in a large, legible font.
- Will you be offering accessibility information ahead of time? This includes sharing the format of the event and how long it will take.
- Will you be allowing your attendees to provide feedback?
Access the full guide here.