Event and Meeting Digital Accessibility Guidelines

Whether we are hosting events in-person or virtually, there are important accessibility decisions to consider throughout the planning and execution stages of an event. The following information helps walk through accessibility guidance in the pre, during, and post-event stages.

Pre Event

  • Create and share accessible invitations and other event marketing and registration materials.
    • Creating an accessible HTML invitation directly in WordPress and linking to it is the most accessible option. 
    • Before converting to a PDF, make sure that you have created an accessible source document. 
    • Consider the type of form you are using for registration to make sure it is accessible. We can recommend accessible form types and/or review your forms for accessibility. 
  • Include an Accommodations Statement on all registration and marketing materials. 
    • Provide multiple ways for someone to contact the event host(s) to request accommodations.
    • Provide a reasonable deadline for requests. Remember that sign language interpreters and live captioners require a longer lead time. 
    • All requests must be followed up on, and the person making the request is the expert on what they require for access. 
  • Determine the level of captioning recommended for your event. In most cases, Zoom captions will be sufficient. 
    • An exception to this is if someone requests a higher level of captioning as part of the accommodation process. 
  • If you plan to share a lot of information with attendees, consider consolidating links (created accessibly) on a Google Doc or web page that can be shared during the event for people to access during and after the event. 

During Event

  • Virtual Events: Enable live captions in Zoom as part of regular practice. Participants can choose whether or not they utilize the captions, but the meeting or webinar host must enable them each time. 
  • Virtual Events: If possible, record the meeting and be prepared to share with attendees if requested. 
  • Virtual Events: Have multiple ways for people to participate in the meeting (chat, speak, etc.) if participation is part of your event/meeting. 
  • Designate someone to be available via chat (if virtual) and otherwise for anyone who may have issues with access during the event (tech support, captions not working, etc.). Clearly explain to attendees at the beginning of the event how to report issues. 
  • Describe on-screen visuals for slides shown during the event. 
  • Provide captions for any pre-recorded video shown during the event. 
  • Display captions if they are required based on the captioning decision matrix or if they are requested as an accommodation. 
  • Have only one person speaking at a time to reduce confusion and also help with captioning accuracy in virtual events. When there are multiple speakers, each should identify themselves before speaking.  
  • Avoid flashing or blinking content that can cause serious medical issues for people with conditions like epilepsy or migraine. 
  • Avoid asking questions that could lead to uncomfortable self-identification of a disability. For example, avoid asking “can everyone hear me?” or “can you all see this?” 
  • Provide a microphone that allows all participants to ask questions from the audience. 

Post Event