Accessibility Guidelines and Services
SSSP is committed to making our annual meeting accessible. We also recognize that accessibility is a process and strive to learn and incorporate new aspects of accessibility every year. These documents are a work in progress. We know that there may be specific access needs not covered here. We want session organizers and conference participants to have an attitude that prioritizes access and inclusion, which means all of us taking all access requests seriously and generously. We also want to create a conference environment where access needs are incorporated into all our events and all participants, disabled or not, are responsible for thinking about access. Please feel free to contact (me) if you have further suggestions on accessibility guidelines so that we can improve them.
Accessible Presentations: Presenters please read the guide that Angela Frederick and Laura Mauldin wrote for ASA’s Footnotes entitled, “Accessibility is for Everyone: How to Rock Your ASA Presentation and Make it Inclusive” and the Society for Disability Studies guidelines for accessibility.
Visual Materials: Presenters are responsible for ensuring the access of the materials which they share with their audience. If visual material is presented, read or orally describe it for blind or low-vision participants.
Handouts can be useful tools to any presentation. These materials must be made accessible to all. Make them available in alternate formats. Print a few copies in a larger (18-point) font and be prepared to share them electronically. (Reasonable efforts on your part and a willingness to relay additional materials at a later date to attendees at your session are certainly acceptable.)
Air Quality & Service Animals: Refrain from wearing any scented products to respect participants who may be sensitive and/or allergic to these types of chemicals. Unless you yourself use a service or therapy dog or other credentialed assistance animal, we ask that you not bring companion animals to the book exhibit or areas where SSSP members are presenting.
Area of Rescue Assistance: An Area of Rescue Assistance will be clearly marked with signage on each floor of meeting space. In the event of a hotel evacuation during meeting hours, hotel staff will check these areas for attendees who require assistance.
Seating Arrangements: All rooms are arranged for wheelchair access. We ask that if you move chairs around, you do so in a way that does not obstruct pathways wide enough for wheelchair users or folks who use other mobility devices. It is especially important to keep doorways clear so that all individuals may come and go during sessions and ‘session hop’ if they please, regardless of disability status.
Sign and Voice Interpreting: There may be American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter(s) present during your session. Do not block the view of the interpreter especially if audio-visual aids are in use. Lights should not be lowered to a degree that would interfere with sign interpretation or lip reading. During discussion periods, be sure the interpreter can hear you and keep up with you. Speak at a normal volume and pace, interpreters do not need you to pause and slow down unnaturally. Please be aware that some people may have great difficulty understanding what you are saying (particularly when there is competing background noise) and that some concepts/terms used in the academic language may be unfamiliar to interpreters. Whether you are a member of the audience or are communicating with someone using an interpreter, give your attention to the person using the interpreter, not to the interpreter. In order to facilitate the work of interpreters and facilitators and for other logistical purposes all program participants must send a copy of their paper to the session presider and/or discussant by June 30.
Audio Equipment: Presenters with soft voices should request the use of a microphone so that their presentations will be more easily audible. If there is a microphone, we ask that you please use it. Please speak clearly and in a reasonable tone into the microphone (especially with proper nouns). An FM audio loop system may also be provided to attendees upon request. This may involve a separate microphone from that used by the general public address system. If one is in use, try to minimize extra noise as much as possible.
Discussions: All speakers should state their names in discussions, whether speaking from the session panel or from the audience. Be patient and be prepared to have your discussant interrupt you to ensure effective ASL interpretation or use of an FM Loop or a microphone if necessary.
We appreciate your efforts in ensuring that everyone can have a great conference experience. If you need accommodations (including microphones for presenters with soft voices) in order to present your paper or have any questions or concerns, contact Laura Mauldin, Accessibility Committee Chair, no later than June 30. Every reasonable effort will be made to assist attendees on-site however, SSSP may not be able to provide all services or equipment due to availability and time constraints. The Accessibility Committee Chair will contact you about service arrangements.
Should a problem arise while you are onsite at the SSSP Annual Meeting:
If you have any problem or negative experience related to accessibility, including issues with housing, meeting sessions, travel throughout the city, restaurants, or any other accessibility related issue, please report the issue to the Registration Desk. A SSSP team member will record the concern and will be your advo cate in working to resolve the issue whenever possible. By informing us of any concerns that arise we can work toward making the SSSP Annual Meeting more welcoming individuals with disabilities, and make the cities and hotels where SSSP meetings are held aware of accessibility issues.
Checklist for Program Participants:
Checklist for Presenters:
Checklist for Session Organizers: