Rutgers Guidelines for Providing Accessible Events, Programs or Activities

Introduction

Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, is committed to maintaining an inclusive, welcoming and accessible educational, working and living environment for people of all abilities across all of the University campuses.  Rutgers University strives for our campus experiences to be universally designed and useable by all people to the extent possible. 

It is everyone's responsibility at the University to ensure that our campus activities, events, programs, and services provide inclusive participation for all attendees.  Identifying and removing barriers to access throughout the event planning process will result in a more inclusive and welcoming experience for all of our diverse campus event attendees.  Therefore, if you are planning an event, program or activity at Rutgers (event organizer), please carefully read and follow the guidelines outlined below.  

Rutgers Access and Disability Resources can assist event organizers with questions, issues or concerns related to accommodation requests. We can also assist in the accommodation implementation process.  Contact Rutgers Access and Disability Resources: (848) 445-4499;  radr@echo.rutgers.edu.

Policy

All Rutgers University events, programs, or activities held on or off-campus are subject to the accessibility requirements of federal, state and local laws.  These laws are civil rights laws that require the University to provide equal access to programs, activities, and services for individuals with disabilities.  Individuals with disabilities have the right to reasonable accommodations to ensure equal access to University events, programs, services, and facilities. It is also simply the right thing to do!

What is an Event, Program, Activity or Service?

Events, programs, activities, or services at the University may include, but are not limited to, University affiliated or sponsored athletic events, academic lectures, receptions, student organization meetings or events, workshops, trainings, symposiums, or field trips for any University audience large or small.   

What is my Role?

An Event Organizer is any member of the University community (faculty, staff, student, administrator, visitor, or affiliated sponsor), school, department, or other unit or group sponsoring an event affiliated with Rutgers University.

As an Event Organizer, you have the responsibility and opportunity to create experiences that are not just accessible, but welcoming for all diverse audience members.  While there may be a lot to consider, utilizing these guidelines and checklists should provide progress toward a more inclusive and accessible experience for all of your attendees. 

  • Consider accessibility early in your planning process. 
  • Be knowledgeable about all aspects of the planning process, including access questions or concerns. 
  • Train your event staff about inclusive and accessible guidelines. 
  • Thoughtful planning, communication and marketing about your event will minimize surprises and provide a means to respond to requests efficiently and effectively. 
  • Budget accordingly for access. 

Prior to the Event:

All promotional materials (written or electronic format) should provide information for participants on how to obtain reasonable accommodations. 

Including a welcoming accommodation statement on all of your communications, registration forms, flyers, web pages, emails, printed materials, announcements etc. will help communicate to your participants to plan accordingly and help you prepare for any needs that might arise for providing access for individuals with disabilities. 

Examples of appropriate statements are below.  It is important to choose a specific person to act as the event organizer that can easily be reached and is familiar with the specifics of the event.  

Event Accessibility Statements:

Rutgers University strives for our campus experiences to be universally designed and useable by all people to the extent possible. If you require an accommodation to participate in this event, please contact the event organizer (INSERT SPONSORING DEPARTMENT CONTACT NAME) at (INSERT TELEPHONE AND EMAIL CONTACT INFORMATION) by (SPECIFIC DATE (suggestion: at least 5 days in advance)). If you are need an accommodation for this event, please provide the name of the event; the date; and the accommodation required in your correspondence to the event organizer.   

In addition to the above statement, it is important to provide a short non-discrimination statement as well on all promotional materials:  

Rutgers University complies with all applicable federal and state laws regarding non-discrimination, equal opportunity, affirmative action, and providing reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities.