This is a great video by our friends at Barclays Access on common accessibility myths which are common across the heritage sector and responses similar to ours.
The Media Release outlines the key findings of the two WAC surveys and the four evidence sessions and flags up the fuller report to be launched in January 2018. The full report will outline a series of recommendations in line with the key findings.
For further information regarding the work of WAC please see http://bit.ly/2yX1sK5
Last year, VocalEyes ran a survey of 1700 museum websites, which revealed that a shocking 27% (458 museums) provided no information that would help potential visitors decide if their access needs would be met. In the report, we made the case that this would result in disabled people being excluded from these museums, and the museums would lose visitors, revenue, reputation, and could even be in breach of the Equality Act 2010. Read the State of Museum Access 2016 report here.
Vocaleyes provided league tables by UK nations and regions, as well as by type of museum (national, independent, local authority, military, university), but we held back from naming museums that failed to provide access information, or those that provided exemplary information and deserved praise. We now feel that this was a mistake, and are looking for public help to contact the museums that failed to provide information, and ask them to fix this, and provide welcoming and useful access information for disabled visitors.
Next year (2018), they are going to be doing this survey again, visiting the websites of all 1700 accredited UK museums, and looking through their access information. Vocaleyes want to see 100% of the UK’s finest museums, galleries and heritage sites to be supporting and encouraging disabled visitors.
How can you help?
If you work for a museum, and your museum doesn’t have access information online, then please read our report and the guidelines, which you can download. And then, please talk to colleagues and fix this – all museums should provide access information online.
If you want to help our campaign, then attached to this page (below, under the Downloads heading) is an Excel spreadsheet of museums that, when we did our survey (Spring 2016), did not provide any access information online.
You can help our campaign in 4 simple steps:
- Check the spreadsheet for museums local to you.
- Select one or more, visit their website and double check for access information in the Visiting section (We did the survey in 2016 – some may have added access information since then).
- If the website definitely don’t have an access page, then contact the museum (via email or contact form) to tell them it needs fixing. We’ve provided some text you can use below, but please feel free to amend, and make it personal to you. I’ve been a bit British in my choice of adjectives; you may wish to use stronger ones.
- Share it on Twitter: I’ve asked @MUSEUMNAME to provide online access information #musaccessinfo @vocaleyesAD http://bit.ly/2vJzmPO
We’ll be monitoring the hashtag #musaccessinfo and we’re of course happy to advise museums keen to provide access information.
Any questions – contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line #musaccessinfo
Dear MUSEUM NAME,
I visited your museum’s website today and was surprised and disappointed not to find any access information. When planning a visit, it is vital for potential visitors to know if their access needs will be met. Without such information, people are more likely to assume that there is little access provision on site, and decide against a visit. Your museum could be losing visitors, revenue and reputation, and could even be in breach of the Equality Act 2010.
I would be very grateful if you would forward this email to the museum manager, or the person responsible for visitor services. I would recommend that they read the State of Museum Access 2016 report by VocalEyes (vocaleyes.co.uk/state-of-museum-access-report-2016), which is accompanied by a useful set of guidelines that will help your museum create useful access information.
Via Vocaleyes Posted on: Wednesday 30 August 2017, 1:11 pm
Heritage Lottery Fund have now published their Inclusive Heritage feature. You can access it via the link below.
The feature focuses on summarising the conference highlights and reference materials, as well as drawing out the key outcomes.
We’re asking disabled people and their friends and family to visit somewhere they’ve never been before on Disabled Access Day (12th March 2016). To help make this happen we are working with venues across the UK (and further afield) to encourage them to hold an event, activity or offer on Disabled Access Day. Last year over 250 venues across the UK and Europe held events, from behind the scenes tours to entrance fee discounts to BSL demonstration kitchens plus much much more. We would love you to join us on Disabled Access Day 2016 and help us make it even bigger and better than our inaugural event, find out how you can register at DisabledAccessDay.com.