Meeting MPI Toronto - May/June 2015 - (Page 22)

ALL WELCOME: MEETINGS MADE ACCESSIBLE Arianna McLaughlin, Deloitte A s event planners, we have a responsibility to ensure that our programs are accessible to all individuals. Hosting an inclusive meeting should be a basic standard for our industry. While the below lists suggestions and items to consider, it is always essential to communicate with your attendees to determine their individual requirements and not make general assumptions about accessibility needs and preferences. CONSIDER ACCESSIBILITY AT THE INITIAL PLANNING STAGE Often, when you begin planning an event, you don't have a confirmed list of attendees and may not be aware of any One way to ensure accessibility is always a consideration is to add a question to your standard RFP to determine if a venue is accessible from the beginning of the sourcing process. specific accessibility requirements. That does not mean that accessibility should not be considered at this stage. In fact, * Is accessible to the washrooms barrier free? the venue sourcing process is key to ensure an inclusive * Does the venue have automatic doors? event and should be a standard consideration during all * Are there handrails for walkways? program sourcing. One way to ensure accessibility is always * Is there ample lighting inside the venue and outside a consideration is to add a question to your standard RFP the venue? to determine if a venue is accessible from the beginning of * Does the hotel have accessible guestrooms? the sourcing process. A site visit is highly recommended to * Is there access to the outdoors to walk guide dogs ensure that accessible requirements are met. during breaks? Some key questions during the sourcing process include: * Is the event entrance barrier free? This includes ensuring that the venue is not only accessible without the use of UNDERSTAND YOUR ATTENDEES During the registration process, provide a question where steps but also to determine that entrances are wide enough attendees can note their accessibility requirements. This also to accommodate wheelchairs and guide dogs serves to set the tone for an inclusive environment from the * If the venue is multi-level, is there elevator access between floors? 22 * ME ETING | MAY/JUNE 2015 beginning. Asking these questions upfront also provides the planner with ample time to arrange for any items specifically

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Meeting MPI Toronto - May/June 2015

President’s Message
Editor’s Word
Welcome, New Members!
Upcoming Events
Food Trends for 2015
Getting a Grasp on Contracts
The New High-End Look of Toronto
We Trust What We See! – Improve Your Speaking and Your Speakers with Winning Body Language
The New Frontier of Event Design is Right Under Your Nose
Experience Design: Linking the Planner’s Sight to the Audience’s Mind
All Welcome: Meetings Made Accessible
Chapter Speaks
ECOS Highlights
Destination: Alberta
Advertisers’ Index &

Meeting MPI Toronto - May/June 2015