Accessible Meetings and Conventions

People with disabilities are active members of the workforce and often need to participate in offsite meetings and conventions, an article on wants to remind hospitality professionals.

“Meeting and event planners must ensure they are accommodated,” says David Dikter, CEO of Assistive Technology Industry Association (ATIA), an organization representing manufacturers, sellers, and providers of assistive technology for people with disabilities.

“It’s incumbent on the meeting planner to be asking all the right kind of questions about accessibility,” Dikter said.  “Hotels and convention centres tend to forget the range of disabilities.”

A lot of the solutions for accommodating people with disabilities at an event are low-tech: ensuring there are ramps and wheelchair-accessible restroom stalls, arranging Braille or large print options, and providing American Sign Language interpreters or captioning services.

New technologies such as automated image captioning technology, connected home devices, tablets, and wearable technologies are also allowing people with disabilities to expand their meeting options.

One emerging option is ClickAndGo Wayfinding, which offers products for people with visual disabilities, including tactile maps, low-vision maps, and virtual kiosks. Unlike GPS, ClickAndGo Wayfinding works both indoors and outdoors.