ADA Update and Technical Assistance Session
Museum Access Consortium Workshop
Wednesday, January 16, 2013
Hosted at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum New Media Theater
Georgia Krantz: Good afternoon, everybody. I hope you can hear me because I'm not going to use the microphone. I just wanted to welcome you to the Guggenheim. My name is Georgia Krantz. I'm the Senior Education Manager for Adult and Access Programs here at the Guggenheim, and a Steering Committee member of the Access Consortium which, of course, is hosting this event today. I just wanted to welcome you all. Thank you for coming out on a very cold and what I consider to be dreary day. And I'm going to go ahead and turn it over to Danielle Linzer from the Whitney Museum to introduce Kleo and the event for today. Thank you for coming.
Danielle Linzer: All right. Thank you so much for coming today. I am Danielle Linzer. I'm the Manager of Access and Community Programs at the Whitney Museum of American Art but also the cochair of the Museum Access Consortium which is the organization hosting today's event. I'll tell you a little bit about MAC and a little bit about Kleo and then we'll dive right into the presentation today. I forgot my printout, so I'm reading off my phone. MAC, which is Museum Access Consortium, strives to enable people with disabilities to access cultural facilities of all types. We define accessibility broadly to include architectural, physical, programmatic, communication, technological, attitudinal and other forms of access. And we also take, as a basic tenant, that increasing accessibility for people with disabilities effectively increases accessibility for everyone. We're offering today's workshop with Kleo King, an ADA technical assistant session, essentially in response to the sort of desires from our constituents, MAC is a membership organization and we really do listen to our members and try to respond by offering programs that are relevant, that are highquality, and that really are able to sort of elevate the dialogue about accessibility and cultural institutions throughout the metropolitan New York area. Kleo is decidedly an expert in disability access and specifically the legalities surrounding those issues. She has worked in the accessibility field for over 23 years as a legal advisor and attorney, primarily in the areas of housing, transportation and access to public accommodations. She's also active in the regulatory process involving the rights of people with disabilities. She served as the vicechair of the American Bar Association's committee on delivery of legal services to the disabled. And as a member of the committee's planning board. She was an active member of the New York City Bar Association's committee on legal issues affecting people with disabilities and was the chairperson from July of 1997 until June, 2000. She served as a member of the US access board’s courthouse access advisory committee and received her law degree from George-Mason University School of Law. She is admitted to the Virginia and New York state bar. I could go on and on with Kleo's extensive biography and accomplishments but I don't think she needs any more introduction than that. She's senior VicePresident at accessibility services with the United Spinal Organization and she is an excellent friend and colleague. I know to the Whitney but probably to many of your organizations as well. Today she's going to be responding in part to some of the questions that folks like you submitted during the registration process but she's also going to be running through specifically a sort of review of some of the changes to the Americans with Disabilities Act that went into effect earlier this year and that were passed in 2010. But she'll also be talking generally about how the law applies to museums and cultural institutions so, very relevant. We're going to spend some time with her presentation and then we'll also have time and space for questions and dialogue. I hope it is a really vibrant discussion. Today's session is being recorded and, since we talk about legal issues, please be advised about that fact before you air very dirty laundry here. This is a safe space—a space for us to connect with colleagues and really share and participate in a community that is committed to advancing the cause of accessibility in museums. But I wanted to let people know at MAC we have a commitment to dissemination and in addition to hosting the workshops we always aim to record them and make them accessible on the web free of charge so that the lessons here can be replicated and sort of have a life beyond what takes place here this afternoon. Thank you very much for coming on this rather dreary day. And I hope we have a great session. I wanted to turn it over to Kleo and thank her so much for being here today. So thank you.
Kleo King: Thank you. Everyone can hear me okay? If it was 10 degrees colder we would be trudging through the snow or this would be cancelled all together, so I guess we’re kind of lucky that it hasn’t hit freezing yet. So thank you all for coming. I know I was here about two years ago. I think it was before the holidays in 2010 that I was here and that was right after Department of Justice had issued their 2010 regulations, which were going to go into effect last March, March 2012. So we did touch a little bit on that. So some of this may be a little repetitive but I tried to add some new things and stay away from technical things, so fortunately you'll see no toilet slides today because plumbing is a big thing. So ADA as you know affects both private entities, Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act as well as any entity state or local government entity which is Title II. Then we have some Title III entities that may receive some money from Title II entities, so that would trigger Title II as well. Not to mention any federal funding that a museum receives and that triggers the uniform federal accessibility standards when you're doing work and Architectural Barriers Act, so if you're doing any kind of renovation, additions, alterations, there is a lot of things that you have to look at to make sure that you're in compliance. And even if you're just not doing anything, there are a lot of requirements as well with the barrier removal standards, which we'll get into. New construction and alteration. As you know, ADA has been in effect since, 1990 it was passed and then it went into effect with the '91 regulations that talked about how to remove barriers. So it has been around for a really long time. But, unfortunately, whenever I go in any place I still see barriers. Some of them may not be readily achievable to remove and others are simple to remove, which gets frustrating when I go in and I see something that has been renovated or newly constructed and there is barriers, because there is really no excuse for that. But under the new so everything in this now we have like an onion of layers and we have the ADA past in 1990 and the regulations came out, the '91 regulations. And people had to entities like museums, cultural entities had to comply with new construction alteration and barrier removal. And if they did that, what does that mean now that we have the 2010? It is kind of like a layer, like an onion. So if an entity is doing work now, that is under the 2010 standards, which went into effect last March. So March 15th, 2012, if any permit for alteration work was issued, the 2010, the architect designing it, the builders, they have to comply with the 2010 standards and regulations. If the permits were issued before March 15th, 2012, and the work is still going on, you can still comply with the old ADA, unless you had to submit a renewal permit then your triggered to the 2010. So if you are doing any work, make sure that your architect is aware of those time frames. They get a little confused as well. And if there is no permit issued, in New York we have to have permits so it is really not relevant here in New York City but in other locations they may not have permits for certain work, so then it would be the start of construction. And it is the same date for barrier removal. And now we get this gets a little complicated.
If you complied with the '91 standards and you're doing no work, great. You're perfect. If you did not comply with the '91 standards, somebody comes in and points something out to you or you see something and you know you're not in compliance with the '91 standards and you're not doing any work, your barrier removal has to follow the new regulations, the new 2010 standards. And this also applies to elements that weren't covered in the '91 standards. That's mostly the recreation facilities. Pools, boat slips, golf courses, miniature golf, a lot of outdoor activities which is not going to apply to museums most likely but maybe if you're at the zoo or the park, one of the parks or outdoor spaces you might have to look at that to see if you do have a pool or some other one of these recreation facilities that wasn't really addressed in '91 was addressed in 2010. Now you have to comply and remove barriers. And I'm sure a lot of you have heard the whole pool debate with the hotels and, you know, if they had an existing pool, yes, they have to remove barriers by adding a lift or something like that. So it I'm not it does get very complicated.
Now, if you're not doing any work and you comply with '91 you're fine. But, like I said, a lot of places think they comply with '91 but actually do not. Historic buildings are also covered. A lot of times I'll hear from a historic property, “well, we don't have to comply, we're historic”. You do have to comply with ADA naturally if you're building doing an addition or renovation. If you're doing a new addition, then that probably that addition is not going to come within the historic nature of the building. It is going to not be covered by the historic designation. If you're renovating the historic building you have to comply. If you're just a historic facility and you have barriers to access, you have to remove the barriers. The caveat with historic buildings is you don't have to ruin the nature of the reason that building is historic. So if the building was designed by an architect, Frank Lloyd Wright, and in its right it is historic or historic because of the way the entrance was designed and that is what’s historic, they're not going to make you rip out the front entrance and totally ruin the historic nature of the building. But you would have to look. Is there another entrance, a back entrance that is if you ramp it or add a lift it is not going to affect the historic nature of the building. Adding assistive listening devices in the building. Is it going to affect the historic nature? You're not going to see an invisible accommodation and then people who are hard of hearing can now come to a program like this because you have the assistive listening devices. So even if you're historic you have to look at, why are you historic? You're historic for your architecture, that still doesn't get you off the hook. You have to look and see how you can make yourself accessible.
Sometimes the answer may be you can't structurally make yourself accessible. So then you would go to alternative methods and how to make yourself accessible. If you're historic because George Washington slept here, you're historic because George Washington was here, you know, when he was signing some historic document. So the building itself and the structure is not historic. Most likely it may be, depending on the architecture or if it’s a house that was built in 1770 but if it is not, if the building is not historic and it’s just the reason why it is historic. Something happened inside the building. Then, again, you may have to remove barriers and make architectural changes because you're not affecting it’s historic nature; now, if you are affecting it’s historic nature and as I talk I give examples. If they're bad examples I don't say where they are and hopefully if you see some of my pictures you're not going to know where they are. I tried to really zero in on the bad thing and not the surrounding area so nobody can say, oh, that is but one good historic building is the Tenement Museum. Making the Tenement Museum accessible is not going to happen. I think the stairs are like thinner than my hips to go up the stairs. You're not going to be able to make that accessible to people who use wheelchairs. So they have done a lot with alternate methods. They use audiovisual presentations. They have people in period costumes talking to people who cannot physically get into the museum. That is they really looked at it and thought about it and made the accommodations that they need. That being said, something like the Tenement Museum that could not physically be made accessible, there is no way to get a person using a wheelchair up to the steps to the various apartments. There may be other things that can be done in there, such as adding the loop system or some kind of assistive listening device that so a person who is on the tour who is hard of hearing can go on the tour, because now there is an accessible feature that makes the tour accessible to them. Or you can offer tours with a sign language interpreter. So people who are deaf can go on the tour. So there are things.
Whether you're historic or not historic that even if the the physical barriers can't be removed, you can make accommodations because, again, while the ADA really does concentrate on physical disabilities, people who use wheelchairs, cane, walkers, and does have some provisions for signage and assistive listening devices and that kind of thing. There's a very general provision called effective communication that doesn't get fleshed out and that is kind of up to you how to accommodate people with disabilities so they can come in to your programs and into your facilities and have the same experiences. I get ahead of myself.
New definitions. In 2010 Department of Justice decided they were going to change the definition of mobility device to make it clearer, and service animal. Mobility device, Department of Justice decided to make it two tier. First tier is your typical mobility devices that people with disabilities use. Wheelchairs, canes, walkers. And they have to be permitted. They must be permitted in all environments. Then there is the other power mobility driven device and this was kind of triggered by the Segway, because people were using the Segways for a mobility device. They can stand but it is hard for them to walk. They cannot get from point A to point B walking. And this is a device that some people with disabilities use but it is also a device that people without disabilities use. So how do you determine? You don't have to let Segways into your building for everybody. But if a person with a disability needs an accommodation and you can do it safely, it is not going to harm the building, the facility, anything in it, or the other folks in the building. We have a lot we get a lot of questions from big stadiums like Yankee Stadium and City Field where people have actually Yankee stadium or City Field didn’t ask us this question, a couple of teams out on the west coast have asked us. They have gotten requests for an accommodation for a person to come in to the stadium on a Segway and you all know how big stadiums are and if you don't go in the right gate you're walking forever. And they just can't have a blanket policy any more. They used to where they weren't allowed, so now they have to look at, is it safe? I mean, you have 60,000 people coming and going. These Segways go really fast. They can. I mean, I think they go up to about 30 miles an hour. They can really get going. So the accommodation this team made was, yes, this person could bring their Segway in, but they have to be escorted. So, one, they can make sure that the person is not going to go too fast and start bumping into everybody else; and, two, also, once they get to their seat, the Segway has to be put somewhere. It can't just be laid in the aisle because it is not like a wheelchair where the person is going to stay in it during the whole game.
So again, it is all about accommodation, you know, never say never. Always talk to the person with a disability. Figure out are they really a person with a disability who needs this accommodation? Now, maybe they need depending on the size of your facility, you know, this might be ridiculous to have in your facility. It is a very small museum or other type of facility but if you talk to them, they might just the person may say, I need it to get to your facility but once I get there, I can walk around or maybe you have wheelchair a wheelchair that you lend out that I could use; but, I need my Segway to come to your museum. Is there any place where I can store it while I'm at the program? Maybe they're just coming to a lecture by an artist and they're not walking around the museum. So again, just remember that it has to be permitted unless the entity can show it is going to alter fundamentally alter the program. Service animals. Department of Justice has decided that a service animal is only a dog. Not a cat. I had a woman call me who had a service cat and screamed at me how dare I change the law. I think she thought she was talking to The Department of Justice and I don't have that power. But it is just a dog. And a service animal is a dog who is going to perform tasks. A lot of people are familiar with guide dogs for individuals who are blind or low vision. But there are also service animals for people who use wheelchairs, amputees, people who have seizure disorders. The dog can alert them that, you know, they're about to have a seizure. So right now under the Americans with Disabilities Act, you only have to accommodate service dogs. City human rights law, and I have actually called them and asked them, well, what is your interpretation of service animal? Have you had any cases where some entity denied a service something other than a dog? And they didn't. So they just told me they would look at a casebycase basis.
So just to know ADA says dog only, human rights may get involved and say a monkey is okay. And again, it is a service animal. Somebody whose dog has been trained that can perform a function, whether it is retrieving items, you know, picking up dropped items, guiding a person who has low vision or who is blind. It is not an emotional support animal. You're probably going to get this is going to be your biggest problem if you have a person coming in who has emotional support animal. They have the cute little puppy that they have under their arm or their little pocket dog and they say it is an emotional support dog under the ADA, you no longer have to accommodate that. The only service animal is a other than your typical service animal that does a function. You also would have to accommodate psychiatric service dogs, which have been trained to kind of keep a person that has psychiatric disorder grounded and able to go out in the public. Maybe they have issues when they go out into crowds.
I know Danielle told me people had a lot of questions about assembly seating. Assembly seating did change under the 2010 rules. We had met with Department of Justice prior to them putting out the 2010 rules in September. We met with them earlier that summer because our real concern was for large venues like Madison Square Garden where there is a lot of fraud issues, unfortunately Department of Justice didn't give us guidance on fraud even though everyone was screaming for help. They did reduce the number of wheelchair locations in larger facilities. So facilities this size, the requirements would be the same from '91 to 2010. When you got into a facility with 500 or more seats, they started reducing the number. It used to be 2% of the seats whether you had 25 seats or you had, you know, 5000 seats. So now it's these are the requirements. 500 to 5000 seats you need six accessible seating locations. When you talk about accessible seating locations you mean the parking space for the wheelchair user and their companion. I always have to go handinhand. So for say 150 and then after 500 for every 150, you add a seat. So for 800 seats, for example, you do your six because that is 500. You need six. And then you figure out, well, there's 800 minus 500 is 300. 150 goes into that two times. You have to have eight seats in an 800 seat theater. I know most of your theaters are not going to be this big and it is not applicable. And then, of course, when the facility goes over 5001, there is even more of a reduction. The Department of Justice did clarify who gets to use accessible seating. And, of course, it is any individual that has a mobility disability who can't use the theatre seat or any person with a disability who needs the accessible seating. The example they gave there would be maybe, the example they gave was the person who uses a service animal and the service animal is not going to fit within the seating area, their foot area would basically flow over and bother other patrons and someone like that could use the wheelchair accessible seat. Of course you have to add a folding seat and allow them to do it. But there has to be a physical reason why they need that seat. And then this just 36 inches is the width of your wheelchair space. If you have twowheel chair spaces adjacent to each other, so you can have twowheel chair spaces and then companions on the left and right of the two spaces. The wheelchair locations can be narrowed to 33 inches each. Just gives a little bit more room.
The other thing with ticketing I don't know if any of the venues here sell tickets to different programs within their facilities but for ticketing, the wheelchair the person purchasing the wheelchair seating area is, of course, has their one companion seat but they're entitled up to three companion seats adjacent to that wheelchair location. And it’s on a first come first serve basis so if they buy the ticket the night before the event and all the wheelchair spaces are taken up except for one wheelchair, one companion, then those extra companions would have to be positioned as close as possible. If they're the first ones to buy the wheelchair seating location then they need to put them adjacent to each other, up to one wheelchair user, three companions. And the way they work this is, under the '91 standard the way it was written, the companion seat had to be a fixed seat. The companion seat would be the theatre seat here and then the wheelchair space would be next to it. Under the new rule, companion seats can be folding chairs, but the chairs have to be comparable. I can't have the metal chair that is really uncomfortable for the companion seat when you have these nice, plush cushiony seats for everybody else in the theater. So your companion seat would be comparable. And there is just 5% of the total number of aisle seats and you count aisle seats and what is 5%? 5% of them have to have moveable arms for people with other types of disabilities. They may be able to get down the aisle but they need the moveable armrest because they use a cane or crutches and it’s easier if the armrest moves up. Previously it was 1% of all the seats so again that is a reduction. Depending on the for the larger facilities.
The number of assistive listening devices also went up in the 2010 standard. It is now based on the number of the capacity, the seating capacity of the room. So and you have to go to this chart. If you have 50 or less seats, you need two. Fiftyone to 200, you need two plus one for every 25 seats. So there's an additional requirement. So if you do have assistive listening systems and you don't have this number of receivers, you would want to maybe put in your budget purchasing more receivers. And under the '91 standard, assistive listening devices were required in spaces that had fixed seating. So, this theatre has fixed seating and the seats are bolted to the floor. Under the new 2010 rules, that no longer talks about fixed seating, it’s if there is any kind of amplification. So if you're in a meeting space with, you know, conference table and some chairs around it and you're having a meeting and it is the person is speaking through microphone you need to have assistive listening devices. If in your hall next to a work of art or a relic or something you have a person talking through a microphone about when it was found or who painted it, then you would have to have an assistive listening device there as well. So it is no longer tied to just theatres like what were in here. And whenever you have assistive listening systems you always have to have the sign notifying individuals that there is an assistive listening system so if they need to get a receiver they can ask for it.
And effective communication. That's, like I said, ADA is really geared towards physical access and Department of Justice talks about effective communication and the definition is you have to take appropriate steps to ensure that communication with people with disabilities are as effective communication with other people without disabilities. And this includes assistive listening devices, captioning and qualified interpreters, large print materials, Braille materials. So it is not spelled out as well as it is when we're talking about a doorway has to be 32 inches. You take your tape measurer. It is either 32 inches or it isn’t. Effective communication is going to vary depending on the person who is coming in and asking for the accommodation or wanting to attend the program. Maybe their only way they can have effective communication is with an interpreter. So again, you would have to have the dialogue and have to be very open to the various kinds of communication that are available and every day technology is changing and there is more improved ways to effectively communicate with people who are hard of hearing or deaf or people who have low vision or who are blind. So it is kind of an ongoing process. You want to review it. As you put in your budgets for your various programs, you know, maybe you haven't had an increase in budget in five years but now you are and you have an opportunity to buy some of the newer technology that's going to provide better communication.
And there are now I was asked this question. There is apps for mobile devices which people can use for way-finding and I put two examples up here. If you just Google Arizona Sonora Desert Museum, you'll find out about or even Google MyGeoTrex. That is a GPS system that is way-finding and it is not for it is for anybody. That is a 21acre facility so it will it is on the mobile app. And the I'll say it wrong. The Werribee Open Range Zoo in Australia also has this OpenMi Excursions and it is a smartphone app that is interactive and it will caption or even have sign language Australian Sign Language on the person's video phone. So whoever is like I'm speaking, they're looking at their video phone and they're either seeing captioning of what I'm saying or they're seeing sign language interpreter of what I'm saying. That being said, not everybody has these types of phones. So you can't just say, “we have these apps so use your phone”. Well, I don't have a phone like this, I probably don’t even know how to use a phone like that. I still have a Blackberry, my son laughs at me. So, you know, you can't just say to the person with a disability, “oh, we have this, you don't have a phone like that. Too bad”. So, you know, you would need to as the facility, have the devices that the person can borrow while they're there to use and instruct them on how to use it. And again, you’d probably have to talk to me for about 10 hours before I would get how to use it. So it shouldn't be your only method of effective communication. Because there is going to be people with varying abilities, whether it is related to their disability or they just have not used technology, they're not going to understand it and it is not going to provide effective communication.
Sales counters. 36 inches above the finished floor. Has to have for wheelchair accessible sales counter. That was the old regulation. It is still the new regulation but the new regulation added a little layer where you're 36inch, and you’ve probably have seen this in hotels. The registration desk is about armpit height, so everybody is signing at their nose when they're standing and then they'll have a little ledge in front that is their at 36 inches high. That is their accessible area where a person who is of short stature using a wheelchair can sign their receipt. The new rule is 36 inches wide. 36 inches high. And as deep as the counter that it is serving. So it is not like this little separate thing or this little it is more substantial. So it would be the same depth, height and then the lower section. Again, in hotels I see great examples of this where the one section of the counter is at 36 inches high. It's perfect. It is wonderful. But it is not the workstation for the person checking me in. It is where they put the huge, beautiful plant or some type of sculpture. So Department of Justice knows these things, too, so they became a little bit more specific.
Now, if all your counters, you're information counter, your ticket counters, are accessible, you don't have to put the wheelchair symbol there. Everything is accessible. It is like if all your bathrooms are accessible you don't have to put the wheelchair symbol on every single bathroom. But if you do have a loop at the ticket counter, the information counter, so that a person who has a tcoil knows they can just switch on and talk to you without saying, you know, I need an accommodation, you would have the symbol for the loop system or an assistive listening device so the person knows because the wheelchair user would know it is at the right height. A person who needs the assistive listening devices are not going to know if the sign is not there and they may not think to ask because the sign isn't there so they're going to assume that you don't have it. Queue lines, they must be at least 36 inches wide and we all see the queue lines where you put the stanchions and little ropes like at the airport. And if you unhook it at one it snaps back and hits everybody behind you. While that's compliant, it is not wonderful because the queue line first of all they can be moved. Now your aisle could be less than 36 and a person using a scooter or wheelchair, walker or some assistive device isn't going to be able to get through there but, also, for people who are blind or have low vision, if they're walking with a white cane, their white cane is not going to detect that little rope or webbing materials, it’s like a belt almost, at hip height, so they could get caught up in it and so really the example on sorry, a little backwards here. The example on the left here shows a good queue line. This I got off of a British website where you see there is not only the bar at about hip height but there is also one at ankle height. The reason for that is so that individual with a cane they're going to detect that and know that they're in the queue line.
Display labels. This is a big item for museums and characters and their backgrounds have to have non-glare finish. They have to contrast what light on dark, dark on light. And ease of use. So you have to look to see, you know, you could have the best color contrast, you know, dark on white and now you've lit the exhibit and there is glare on the sign or the label and the person is not going to be able to read it. So just make sure, and the uniformity of the color and the text is very beneficial. Here I hope none of you recognize it. This is not New York so I figured I was safe. Examples of poor color contrast. It looks green in the picture. The oxygen one. But it is actually blue with like a little bit darker blue print. It was hard for me to read, not that I have 20/20 vision any more. I was very impressed with Danielle when she was reading off her Blackberry, it’s very minute. But this is not good color contrast. A person who has low vision is never going to be able to read that sign and, also, I would even question while the caption is probably compliant with character height, the rest of the sign is not. And then over here, this was white on gray. Color contrast was probably questionable. But there was a lot of glare so you couldn't see it, the sign. This was good. It was very dark blue with white lettering and the signs were at the front of the exhibit so they were right under the person who was reading them. And very easy to see. No glare. Looked like glare but that was just my photography ability. So there are requirements for minimum character height. And there's a table in the 2010 standards, that is 703.5.5, that tells you the viewing distance from the label that they're reading. That is why people come to museums. They want to see what is there and they want to know what they're looking at and the information about it. You know, when was it discovered? When was it painted? So they there is the table and there is a copy of it.
I think the Powerpoint is going to be posted on your website, I think. So you'll have the table here. So basically it shows you the horizontal viewing distance and the minimum height of characters that's needed. I mean, I don't know if you're going to go through your whole museum and look at every label to see if you comply but anything new coming out you really need to look at this and make sure that it complies. Display labels at height, you know, 36 inches above the finished floor. If you have a person with a short stature, a person sitting in a wheelchair scooter, children, they can see the label and read it and if the label is sloped, that just makes it easier because they don't have to bend over it. Plus if it is sloped more people can be reading it at the same time. And make sure that if you do have labels like this they don't become protruding objects and we'll get to that later. The height of wall labels and this is a pretty good diagram. To accommodate a person sitting in a wheelchair or scooter, or a person who is person standing is between 48 and 67 inches, the center line at 54 and having your label there most people are going to read it and this diagram I think I may have gotten from the Smithsonian Guide book that tells you about how, you know, best practices for exhibits. Again freestanding display cases, 36 inches. That is the height of your counter. It is going to be the accessible height for a person who is sitting in a wheelchair or scooter. Best practices would be if you did have it rather than have them do a side approach of it, the display, if they could pull up under and actually look over it. But that is not required. That is why it says best practice. Here is some good examples you see everything is basically at 36 inches and the bad example below, again this is in New York City. The display case in the back is at 36 inches. The display area in the front is at 72 inches. 72, a person using a wheelchair, scooter, short stature, child, small child, is not going to be able to see in that case. The reason there is nothing in the case is because this is brand new construction. This wasn't the only thing I found, it was the only one I put in the slide show. I didn't want anybody to recognize it.
Reach ranges. If you have a display where there is going to be interaction, a lot of times now there is--people are typing in something on the computer on a keyboard and information comes up. You need to have or maybe you're pulling something or doing a lever to see, you know, like a natural history museum kind of thing. They show you a food item and, who eats this, then you pull the thing back and it is a Tiger. That kind of thing. If you have to do any interaction with the display, the reach range has to be 48 inches maximum, 15 inches above the finished floor. So anywhere from you can't be below 15 inches or above 48. This changed from '91 to 2010. Reach ranges, and that’s why I put both side approach and forward approach here. Under the '91 standard and this comes into play a lot in restrooms, I know I’m going back to toilets again, where you have your paper towels. If you were building a brand new toilet room today or you're putting in a display area, these would be you would have to go between 48 and 15 inches. Under '91 standards, if the area for a side approach was available, you could go as high as 15 or, sorry, as high as 54 inches and as low as 9. So that's something where I said if you comply with the '91 standard and you're doing no work you don't have to go back in and change so you don't have to go back in all your bathrooms and lower your paper towels to 48 inches. If you're doing work in the bathroom and renovating the bathroom, yes, you would have to comply. So that's just something to keep in mind. If you are anywhere between 48 and 54 inches for your side approach and there is enough room, maneuvering space, then you comply until you make an alteration to that item or that area and then you would have to come down to 48. The other thing is and I’ve had this question if you're at 58 inches, you don't comply. You got to bring it down 48. You can't bring it down to 54. Cause never complied with '91 and so now you have to comply with 2010. We had a lot of people rushing around in February of last year trying to make things under the '91 standard before March 15th came along. Reach ranges change if you have to reach over an obstruction. Like this podium I have to reach over this podium to get to something. So if your reach range decreases for your forward approach, the more you have to reach over. Say like a desk or something. If that if the desk is only 20 inches you still stay at 48. If the desk goes from 20 to 25 inches, protruding out, you have to lower it to 44 inches. Any you can't have something more than 25 inches protruding out, deep. Side reach it is you can have anything from 10 inches out and you still can maintain your 48inch reach. But if it goes from 10 to 24 inches then you have to go down to 46 inches for your reach. So if you have to reach over, say, a counter or something. And again, anything over 24 inches isn't allowed.
Accessible work surface. So you have a computer station. People sit. There is little stool that people sit on and they're going to do whatever their computer station there is for. Typing in their statistics and they can see themselves if they were born I don't know in 1560 or something. It is a workstation at that point. You have to comply with the workstation requirements. So the top of the desk can't be more than 34 inches. The knee clearance has to be at least 27 inches or higher above the finished floor. And then there has to be a depth for knee and toe clearance. So if you have any workstations like this, you might want to evaluate them or if you are replacing workstations make sure that they comply. Again, I already said this, interactive exhibits. You have to have operable parts. And again the reach has to be between the 15 and 48 inches. The force shouldn't be any more than 5 pounds, that’s the requirement for any interior door, they apply it to anything else that’s operable. And you can’t have tight pinching and twisting. I was doing a review at a museum and there was this lever that you had to kind of push one to the left and one to the right and then it revealed something behind the little doors. And I was there, for the life of me I could not make this work. And I was with a colleague who is much younger and fitter than me and she could not make it work either. We're starting to laugh and making notes like this is really not accessible. Two high school boys came over and like boom. Opened it up. Once we saw kind of the weird way they had to do it we could do it but it was very difficult. And it took a lot of force. So that definitely wasn't compliant. But the boys got a kick out of it.
Space requirements. Path of travel 36inch minimum. The other thing with ADA, I said, you know, it is pretty physical environment centric, it is also minimums. So 36 minimum isn't great. It is allowable but not great. If you have a 36 minimum width, whether it is like a hallway like we're walking down here, the aisles between your exhibits, it complies. It's not ideal. But if it's only 36 inches then every 200 feet it has to widen to 60 inches for passing. So anything actually anything between 36 and 60 inches, so if your aisle is 50 inches wide, every 20 feet it has to widen to 60 inches so people can pass, whether it be twowheel chair users or one wheelchair user and other folks. So best practices, everything keep everything 60 inches wide. It is going to be more userfriendly for everybody. Nobody wants to feel like they're crammed in. Protruding objects. This is I don't care where I go. Any museum I have looked at has had protruding object problems. Anything above anything below 80 inches, above my head, is a protruding object. If it is at 79 inches, like this light fixture here, they're all above 80 so I can use it as a good example. That light fixture, if it was at 79 inches it would be considered a protruding object. And the worst protruding objects are staircases. These kind of open staircase in the middle of a room. This one again it is not New York. I took out the New York picture because I knew you would know where it was. That’s me. I'm 5foot, 6 inches tall on a good day, that’s less than 80 inches, and you can see that thing comes right to my eyes. It would be a protruding object, I could run into it. Someone who has low vision or who is blind, their cane is not going to detect that. They're going to hit it. It is a protruding object. There was no edge protection around the bottom. Or they could have just put in some kind of a display. This happened to be a library. They could have built a lovely like little book case under that section and maybe put in some old books or rare books or made it a really useable space.
So in our report we definitely noted this and that they had to fix that. That is the most typical. You can do cane detection around the bottom so that then they know to avoid underneath the stairs. In my office building one stair they did a good job. The other stair they totally missed. What they did, they made a wall that was about 5 inches 6 inches maybe high and filled it in and made this whole it is higher than that. Probably about 12 inches high and made this whole little planter area and it is really nice. The other one they didn't do anything. I have seen people run into it. Your typical protruding object is, say, like a phone. These are kind of antiquated. Most places are removing them. Drinking fountains. This one was actually in a museum. It was mounted in the circulation path that protruded 6 inches because you're only allowed to protrude 4 inches, anywhere from 27 inches above the floor. So if you're lower than 27 inches you can protrude. But anything that is 27 inches above the floor to that 80 inches we talked about before can only protrude 4 inches. The leading edge of this sign was at 29 inches and protruded 6 inches. That is a protruding object and they have to fix it. I saw a lot of that. Here is a display case that was 30 inches above the floor and protruded more than 4 inches. You could add maybe a 27inch little apron around the bottom to make it comply. It is not that you have to totally get rid of the display case or, you know, fix it some way. Drinking fountains. The drinking fountains over on the left, it’s an outdoor space. If it was just reversed because coming from this side that is deep into the picture, there is that column there from the wall that makes those fountain from that direction not a protruding object. Because the column would would push the person over and they wouldn't hit the drinking fountain. The one closest to us in the foreground if they would have just flipped the high/low because the low fountain was right at 27 inches it wouldn't be a protruding object. But the higher fountain was 30 some inches. So there's creative ways to do things.
This is less of an example. This is mounted on the wall at 54 inches. It stuck out 7 inches. The Department of Justice really cites stuff like this. The Department of Justice, if you have lights along your wall and they protrude more than 4 inches and they're, obviously would be above 27 inches but if they're below that 80 inches they're going to site that as a violation. I have seen that in a lot of different places where they come in. Program access, we talked about this. Having virtual tours. Lectures with different types of accommodation. Handouts that are in alternate format, whether it be audio format, large print, Braille, you need to have things available. Any time you print something, whether it's your museum brochure, your museum map, your program for, you know, a lecturer, anything, you need to have it in alternate format. So if you print it, you need to have various formats. I'm trying to think what else. If you have a restaurant in your facility, 5% of the total number of seating has to be accessible. Under the old I call it old under the 1991 standard it was 5% of your tables. Now it's 5% of your seats. The Department of Justice did come in, the US Attorney came into New York City last year, took the Zagat guide, and sent letters to the top 50 restaurants in Zagats saying fill out this survey. Are you accessible? The restaurant filled out the survey, submitted it to the Department of Justice, and Department of Justice, the US Attorney, then came out and did their own inspection and found, you know, various violations in restaurants whether it was the tables, getting into the restaurant, toilet facilities and is working with the restaurants to remove those barriers. And they also had questions on there about reservations. If you take reservations over the phone, did you have a TTY or a relay service or how were you able to take reservations for someone who was deaf? They had questions about Braille menus. So they, you know, were trying to expand it from just a physical access. But tables were the biggest problem. Every restaurant had a problem because they didn't have 5% of their seating and then in a restaurant situation you count the number of stools at the bar, too. So that if you have 100 seats in a restaurant, five have to be accessible under 5%. If those 100 seats are at 20 tables, 5% of 20 tables is one table. So it is different. You can't have one big table and say oh, five people in wheelchairs can sit here. They have to spread it around. So that if you do have a cafeteria or a restaurant in your facility, you know, I know like MoMA has the modern restaurant and that is accessible. So you do have to look at your restaurants.
So common issues that we've seen when we have gone out and looked at museums and parks and other cultural facilities. No. 1 is protruding objects. And especially museums. You have different exhibits that come in. And, you know, maybe the artist that is coming in and creating that space. Protruding objects are a big problem. You as the museum would be held liable if the person creating the space wasn't complying with the rules. Effective communication. That's probably right up there with protruding objects. I have some facilities that think oh, we have large print. If somebody asks we'll get it to them in Braille. That is not effective communication. Same thing with their tours. They offer tours, you know, guided tours throughout the space, throughout the museum. They have to offer tours that are going to be accessible. Audio description for people who are blind or low vision. Sign language for people who are deaf. Assistive listening devices. Tactile maps so they can get around the museum. You know, you have to look at and be very creative and truly have effective communication, and not just wait for somebody to request. You don't have to have one million copies of it and the exhibit changes and you throw them away but you need to have availability. And again, that is the second bullet. The information isn't provided in the various formats it should be provided in and labels that don’t meet the signage requirements, make it really difficult to read. A lot of times if they're not going to if the signs aren't don't comply with the standards they're going to be difficult for a lot of people to read. Printed materials and alternate formats. Programs that are not accessible, that is the guided tours and things like that and various formats.
Insufficient directional signage. One facility, three floors, had several elevators throughout the building but in the main space it was escalators. That is great. I get to the escalator. How do I know where the elevators are? Yeah. It is on your printed map but maybe I didn't pick one up or maybe I can't read your printed map but I would be able to read a sign telling me where those close accessible elevators are so there really needed to be signage at the escalators guiding people to the elevators. Same thing with accessible and inaccessible entrances. You have more than one entrance and they’re not all accessible, you have to have signs at the accessible entrance saying it is accessible. That is the international symbol of access that we saw before. But at your inaccessible entrances you need signs telling you where your accessible entrances are and an arrow pointing to which direction might be helpful, especially if the building is a whole city block long. Ancillary spaces. We go into museums and sometimes people get caught up and are really, we have a new exhibit. Everything is great and accessible but then you go in and your toilet rooms are not accessible. Your coat check is not accessible. Your gift shop isn't accessible and somebody can't get into the gift shop, it’s very cramped, so you really have to look at all your spaces. And that is just who I am. I guess it is time for questions and if you have a question raise your hand and we're going to have microphone come around. So the tape can hear you as well as the CART interpreter. I apologize to the CART interpreter I do talk fast and I know it is a very hard job to keep up with me.
Audience Member: Hi. Thanks for that. That was really great. I was in a situation where someone wanted to put signage on a large vehicle and their plan for putting the signage, not on the vehicle but next to it, was in a really low sign. It was just about a foot or so off the ground. Is that legal to have signage that low?
Kleo King: I would say that it should be within the dimensions we had that we showed before so people can read it. If it is that low no one is going to be able to see it.
Audience Member: That is what I was saying to them. Even if it is large, the print is large. Can they make an accommodation that way the print is very large?
Kleo King: I mean, there is no requirement where I can say that the sign has to be, you know, so far off the finished floor. I would try to argue that at least the bottom of the sign at least is 15 inches, you know. But there's no real requirement that tells me it can't you know, go all the way down to the floor. Usability wise, practicality it is not going to be useable by the majority of the people.
Audience Member: Thank you. [I was wondering are there specific number requirements when it comes to alternative access for things like audio tours where you have scripts or large font scripts or t-coil adaptors, is just having one enough or are there specific best practices or actual requirements for a number? In most cases maybe one would be sufficient but it could be a day where there is a group of visitors with the same need. Like when what is the minimum amount
Kleo King: There is not really a number where you could say you have “X” number of visitors a day so you should have “X” number of large-print brochures. The only time we get into numbers is if there is a guided tour that’s audio amplified, you know, the person doing the guide has the little microphone on, looks like J Lo bouncing around, then you have to have assistive listening devices based on that chart to accommodate a group. You know, I would always say you should have more than one because, you know and also we would look at usage. How often have you had to use the accommodation. But that's not a great tool either because usage might be low because the person doesn't know you have it available so doesn't ask. So, you know, you may want to say you have these things available and to ensure you know, if you're advertising a new exhibit, you know, the program is in Braille, for example say. Or on audio-cassette or whatever. Wow I just dated myself. And you put that in your program. You might want to say to ensure availability call ahead. Not require them to call ahead but just to make it so it is easier for you to gauge how many you should have.
Audience Member: [off mic] are there volume levels that must be met for apps and what not when there is an audio portion?
Kleo King: Not under the ADA. There probably is in other guidance for programs and what decibel levels are better for people to hear with. But there is nowhere in the Americans with Disabilities Act where I can say here what is required. Having volume change, you know, so you can lower like on telephones they require volume control so if you have volume control on your various types of audio that would be the best way to accommodate everyone's range.
Ruth Bernstein: Hi, I'm Ruth. I'm with the Hearing Loss Association of America and I just want to reiterate something that you said before. You want to know what person with disabilities needs. I suggest you bring a group in. Many years ago before MAC was formed, MoMA had a consumer group and brought us all in to tell them exactly what we needed. They learned and we learned. I think that if you put in an accommodation and people don't know what the engineer know the answers. The designers know the answers but the consumers really know the answer.
Kleo King: Unfortunately sometimes the designers don't know the answers. That is why we see bad things. Because a lot of things are gray. You know, there is one thing to say 32inch clear wide door. I had a question today, if the doors recess more than 8 inches you have to have the 18 inches of clearance on the right side so your indent of more than 8 inches would be the width of the door plus 18 inches. That is what it says in the language. The diagram which architects love pictures more than they love words shows you measuring it not from the surface of the door but the surface of the wall which usually, you know, the door is about an inch recessed and then you have the wall. So he had 8 inches from the wall. But it was 9 inches from the door, it was a violation. He had to put that extra 18 inches and the building is already 90% constructed. So oops you have to go back and fix it. Sometimes it is gray and people read things differently or look at pictures differently.
Audience Member: Hi, I'm [NAME] from Brooklyn Botanic Garden. I was curious if you could talk about Braille for a second. We have some gardens where the signs are in Braille but I wasn’t sure how much Braille was being taught now to people or if there was a better alternative for tactile elements like that on signage.
Kleo King: I think she's going to kill me but we have someone in the back that could answer that question better than I could. Ellen, could you answer the question?
Ellen Rubin: Hi, I’m Ellen Rubin and the issue about Braille is really complicated because now that we have so much inclusion in classrooms for children with all types of disabilities, there are many blind kids that are not getting Braille; however, there are advocacy groups of people who are blind that really try and encourage Braille usage. So it is not an easy question to answer because without the Braille, children are now really illiterate because they're only used to listening to information. There is not necessarily an alternative to a tactile format. Some places use raised letters but it takes much more space than Braille does. And many people who are Braille users do not know how to read the tactile images. Sorry
Kleo King: That is good information. And signage requirements and ADA talk about permanent rooms and spaces, so you have your men's room or women's room, there has to be a sign on the wall on the latch side of the door, not on the door, on the wall, it has to have Braille letters as well as raised lettering but then when we get into more of the labels and things like that, again, not a whole lot of guidance but more different formats that you could put it in than having it in Braille and it is going to accommodate, you know, a large portion of people who are blind. I guess according to Alan more of the older community as opposed to the kids coming out of school today. But maybe if it was available more readily available maybe they would, you know, learn it.
Ellen Rubin: It’s problematic because it really makes people have problems, they can't read the large print and they can't read the Braille. So there is not really a possibility unless they do something audio.
Kleo King: Right. Then you have to have audio format also available. Any other questions? One down front? I didn't see anybody else, sorry.
Audience Member: Hi I’m Miranda and I work at the Intrepid. We're very affected by the storm, so we have some temporary buildings and some permanent structures as well. Are the codes any different for temporary structures? Like for example we have a welcome center that is now a tent that will be there for 6 months.
Kleo King: A temporary structure would have to be accessible. Say the tent was off the ground, it was on a platform you would have to ramp it. Any kind of counter or displays in the tent should be accessible at the right heights and what not. After September 11th, there was some trailers where people were going in to find out claim items and what not. They have to ramp those. Actually they called us in, and at that point we had a facilities group that actually built things until it became problematic. We went down and built the ramps for them so they could be accessible to everybody. Actually even after Katrina, Access Board came up with guidelines for the emergency. They call them emergency transportable housing, when I was a kid we called them trailers, have to be accessible, 5%. They have to have inspected out and if you have any temporary trailers or what not they are accessible. A lot of people are going to rebuild their facilities and getting federal money, and getting federal funding and you’ll have to look at requirements when you're going in and making your repairs after Sandy.
Audience Member: Hello, my name is George. I was wondering besides, I guess, the most obvious answer but maybe you have another opinion. When you receive exhibits that may have originated in another country with display cases and other items, is there anything you would suggest as far as the checklist beside the obvious just, all right, this is going through all the things you’ve covered as far as height and everything. Is there something that you would suggest besides going through the obvious checklist and going through each item and thinking about placement? Any sort of tip that we can use? Because occasionally we do get foreign items and they're not compliant and we have got to go back and kind of we have learned to think about that more when they come from other countries but do you ever any tips as far as when dealing with an international item or other
Kleo King: Other than you need to if it is coming here and being displayed here, you have to comply. The question I usually get is, you know, the artist that is creating the artwork for the display or the exhibit is very particular and doesn't want anything touched and it has to be this way and, you know, maybe a protruding object or, you know, not have the signage that is required. You just to have explain. Look, you know, you're in our country now. You have got to do it. Our rules you know, me, my museum is the one that is going to get the complaint against them. They're not going to complain against if you borrowed it from a foreign country or an artist that came from another country and just try to maintain the quality of the work as well as, you know, keeping it accessible. If I give this example you’re going to know what it is. When a work you think of art, you're looking at a painting that is visual. There is more artwork now that is becoming audible. That is the if it is something that is the experience is all audible. People close their eyes and they're enveloped in the experience, it is audible. You have got to figure out a way to convey that to somebody who can't hear. Same thing with when the experience is totally visual. I can, you know, plug my ears and just develop it visually. Someone who is blind can't do that. You're going to have to get audio description. Audio description doesn't mean you call the person from down the hall to kind of read the sign. You've got to really understand it and explain it. If it, say, you're looking at a Ming vase you have got to be able to know how to explain it. Somebody is blind, you know, the vase is the color of the sky, well they may not know what the color of the sky is. They're completely blind. They have never seen the color of the sky. So there is a way to describe it so they can relate to it. So again audio description is like American Sign Language. It is qualified interpreter basically and you would have to so maybe for a foreign exhibit if you couldn't meet everything maybe the solution is going to be some kind of guided tour where you can take people with different disabilities depending on what you can't accommodate so that they can experience it.
Danielle Linzer: I had a question. This is Danielle from the Whitney. It was very helpful to kind of revisit the guidance on text sizes for labels and signage. I was wondering, when using universal access symbols, if there is any guidance on the size at which they should be presented.
Kleo King: If you go to the same section of the ADA, 700 section, that is the signage section. They the access board has given you the various pictograms and the different signs the different requirements.
Danielle Linzer: There is a specific, for example, the symbol for assistive listening should always be above a certain dimension? Is that specified?
Kleo King: Yeah. And it talks kind of like my lettering chart. It will have like if it is a pictogram.
Danielle Linzer: Great.
Cindy VandenBosch: I'm from Museum Access Consortium. I'm curious to know in your line of work, with so many new technologies coming out and museums eager to use them. Have you encountered sort of gray areas or is The Department of Justice looking at technology, including sort of websites and apps and new ways? You know, in terms of regulation? I mean, it is an interesting area. I think a lot of us are kind of learning together how to make technology accessible to a variety of visitors. But I'm just curious if you have any thoughts on this and whether there are certain areas that are still
Kleo King: We’re being taped so... The Department of Justice is the lawyers so I can say this.
Cindy VandenBosch: Okay.
Kleo King: They're not looking into research and things like that. The access board is more the technical folks. They're the engineers and the architects and the IT kind of folks. And they, you know, look at different things. Like right now I'm on a committee for durable, like medical equipment. The exam table and things like that. So the access board and they have done public rights of way research which is I mean like 10 years old. It takes forever for things to get out of access board because, while it’s guidance, like outdoor spaces, we have a lot with outdoor spaces guidance, but The Department of Justice hasn't adopted it yet. While I can say this is probably good practice guidance, it is not The Department of Justice that is going to come in. Title V of the ADA is communication but that is more like, you know, the video on the plane that tells you about security and TV and, you know, what FCC governs and things like that. So I guess the short answer to your question is there's not a whole they're not looking at a whole lot based on technology at this point. At least Access Board and the Department of Justice. There may be other agencies that are. Because I mean even in my opinion, you know, effective communication, I mean they could have really fleshed that out if they wanted to. They didn't. They made it very general and left it up to all of you to figure out how to do it. Work with people with disabilities. What do they need? Like you say technology with the two examples I gave you. I was just in Europe. I was doing some tours of different museums and things. It was pleasure not work. I was amazed. I mean, you know, I was in the Monaco in the palace and I went through the tour. And they have a litany, you know, 26 languages and I want English. The people behind me were Japanese. And we got the little recorder and listened to it and we pressed whatever buttons we needed. I mean, I don't see any of that in the US, for different languages, let alone for accommodating people with disabilities. You know, obviously the whole palace, the part we could tour, was wired and geared or however they did the technology so when I was in room 11 I pressed 11 and it told me all about the room. But I mean, I think we could do a lot more than we do in the US.
Constance: I just wonder about effective communication and when you say effective communication, communication works both ways you know you talking to the person and what I want to talk to and when it comes to a nonverbal person we can communicate back. So is that something that we [off mic] that is something that we should think about?
Kleo King: Yeah. I think we should think about it. And I think if it is there is a person maybe for whatever reason and we do this kind of in our you know, in our training where we're familiarizing people with, you know, how to interact with people with various disabilities. Communication for somebody who is nonverbal so they're understanding what I'm saying to them but they can't say it back to whatever reason. You know, how else can they communicate? And, you know, can they gesture? Can they write it down? A lot of times if they cannot communicate they may not be able to write as well, depending on a, could be a neurological problem. Yeah, that would be something where we would try. Now, maybe if people are phoning in and the nonverbal person is using some kind of relay or a wire or something that would be a way to effectively communicate with the nonverbal person. Any other questions? We have 25 more minutes. I’m trying to think of other examples. The other thing that is really frustrating is, and this has actually happened. We are called in, we do a review, whether it is a plan review of a new building or a review of an existing building. We give the report on, you know, we give the report. We tell you what you have to do. We're not the police. We're not Department of Justice. If you don't do what we say we you know, we have a contract. We can't go and tell The Department of Justice, you know, they just built a new building. Nothing is accessible. But that has actually happened in a couple of instances. Not everything, just minor nuances. Again, I said a lot of things are gray. And again it is not anywhere here. They didn't comply with what we said. One thing is, singleuser bathrooms, under '91 standard if you have singleuser bathrooms, you know, five bathrooms in a row, either a man or woman could go in any one of them. Under '91 standards they all had to be accessible. Under the 2010 rules, 50% have to be accessible. 50% of five is three. The building was being built under '91 standards, we knew 2010 was just around the corner. So, you know, first we said all of them. Do them all. Their architect balked and said I'm only doing one. Like one stall in a gang bathroom. We said well, at least give us 50%. Three. And they ended up doing just one like their architect said because they wanted to listen to the person they wanted to listen to. And they ended up getting somebody complaining and then they turned around to us and were like what did you do? I keep everything. I showed them, look we went back and forth on this like 10 times. Not my fault. Your fault and your architect's fault. I mean, things do happen. Like I said, all new construction is not perfectly accessible. I can probably go in to almost any facility and find something if I'm really looking.
Audience Member: This is not so much a question as just a comment. Especially for a programmatic accessibilities. Just because it is so difficult, I guess I’ll say that. But because it you're not going to have effective you're not going to have a sign language interpreter probably on staff and you’re not going to have things readily available 24/7 for anybody to have, how important it is to have a policy somewhere. And somewhere that is visible and easy to find for somebody checking the web. Just so the information is available so people know what the parameters are for requesting certain accommodation. I mean, I still have a lot of issues with programmatic accessibility because there are way too many cultural organizations, especially in New York City. I don't care. I will say it. Just say no we don't do that. And so they don't provide it. And all too often people just go okay. And it is incredibly frustrating from, you know, our perspective as to what advice the easy solution is just going, we’ll file a suit, sue them, which is not readily achievable. Not readily achievable from the person with the disabilities, it is exhausting to constantly do that but also in terms of the response you're going to get either from the DOJ or what actually is going to be accomplished by your lawsuit can be also frustrating in the long run. So it gets difficult. But I think the more people can be out with what their policy is, and just easily easy to find. The most frustrating thing for from the consumer end, is not knowing where to look or how to find it and that just gets hard. So I think a policy to start with for a lot of things is just really important to be clear about this is what we do. This is what we can’t do. And I think it starts a conversation of people knowing what to ask for and I think the more people feel comfortable with what you're offering I think then the more people then ask for more and that then opens up the dialogue for services to get better.
Kleo King: I can't agree more. And that is a good point. Also it reminds me of something else I wanted to say. Website, you should have your access right on the front page whether it is a click through and then you have a whole page and way to ask for accommodations like sign language interpreters or things like that. The biggest thing also is that, when you do have accommodations, that all your frontline staff are trained. You have people whether they're staff or volunteers at and information table, if you have the information on an audio disc or whatever that they can take with them and the person at the information desk doesn't have any idea and they say no then, one, you went to all that expense to make it accessible and two, nobody is using it and, as Beth said, then the person is going to go away thinking, well this museum is not accessible. They're not accommodating, they're not friendly, and not come back. And I mean, you know, we're all in the service industry and you know you want to serve people. Actually I was at a museum that had their program their guide – so it tells me I'm in such and such a room and this is what I'm looking at. They had it in Braille. They had it in large print. They also had some of their tours where you could get an assistive listening device and I asked the the information desk is manned by volunteers, I asked the person at the information desk. They had no idea, on anything. But I had already talked to the person that does the accessibility programming and knew that it was available. And I said, no you do have it and there was even a sign that says, you know, large print or something. And they were looking in the back, in the cupboards, and that was just if I was truly there to look at the exhibit and not testing her and needed that accommodation, I would have gone away frustrated and not wanted to go back to that museum. So both having it readily available through website. If you're putting out some kind of a brochure where you have got a new exhibit coming and, you know, I can pick this up at different locations around the City. You need to have it. At least some type of information on there saying it is accessible. How to call if you need an accommodation like a sign language interpreter or a guided tour that is going to have audio description or whatever. Your accommodations are going to be a lot of people do. Like you said. They, one, are not going to go out and hire a private attorney. Two, if they're calling and complaining about something that is not going to be broad like The Department of Justice going through this Zagat guide and doing the top 50 restaurants. I don't know how many times I tried to get them to look at something that is so egregious but it’s just going to fix this one space, they don't look at it. They want to look at a broad ooh, look at us, New York Times is going to publish an article about it. That is frustrating to us as an organization as well as the people with disabilities. They know that. In New York City we also have City Human Rights, which is a little bit more accessible and they'll come out and look and, you know, try to negotiate a settlement. They don't take a lot of things to trial. They try to come up with agreeable solutions. Any other questions?
>> Female: I’m from MAC. We have a lot of people in the audience who access coordinators that are responsible for accessibility at their respective institutions, and I’m wondering if you could say a little bit more about how we might be able to utilize the services at the united spinal organization or other similar organizations, you know, we're always looking for more resources and opportunities and we would love to hear more about that in particular.
Kleo King: I have to do a commercial.
Audience Member: Yes, please.
Kleo King: United Spinal Association, we have this accessibility services program. We do charge a fee. We can negotiate it. Typical fee is $150 an hour. We give you a not to exceed amount based on the site of the location, that’s for, like, a site assessment. We also do plan review. A lot of times what a facility will do if they're doing something new is either they'll hire us directly to do the plan review or they’ll tell their architect, look we want to make sure we're 100%. Bring on this group. Then the architect hires us. Ellen I think you also do services. Would you like to
Ellen Rubin: I work as an independent consultant and talk about the kinds of things that are of concern specifically to people who are blind or low vision. But I also have had cross-disability experiences and so, depending on when I can sort of throw things in as well but it is one of the things, as you say, I can't tell you the number of times I’ve been told, oh, we don't have anything for you. It is really frustrating because if I'm with somebody and we happen to wander around enough, we usually can find stuff that is for me, and accessible. It really is important. Plus having information about alternative formats and knowing what that means and making that available as you are making whatever other information available is really important as well.
Kleo King: I actually was looking at a museum, both physical access, but also saw program access. I went to every exhibit and looked to see. Was there an audio component? Did the audio and signs match up? Was there an audio component there but not activated? So all the museum had to do was turn it on and now, the audio component would work. When they had TV or video, was it captioned? And I made for the museum I had to make a list of here is things that had both. Here is things that had just visual and here is things that just had audio information. Here is things that just had visual information. So that they could make sure that everything had an audio and a visual component. And then I was told they had me meet with different staff members. I met with some of the curators and people who, you know, design the exhibits and put the exhibits up and then I met with security, and their volunteer coordinator. Then I met with the building facility coordinator and the first thing she said to me was, we're going to turn off a lot of the audio. It disrupts people. I think I had said there were two audios and one was drowning out the other. I think I mentioned that to her. She went oh we're going to turn off the audio because, you know, it is distracting to others. I went oh. Make a note of that. I told the accessibility coordinator and she was like apparently the person was difficult to deal with and she's like that is not going to happen. Trust me, that will not happen. So again the museum has all the right intentions but, you know, with this person who is in charge of the facility and they're supposed to go around and check things, start turning off stuff without asking anybody, kind of appeared to me like she would. So I gave a heads up to the accessibility coordinator so she can keep an eye on her.
Danielle Linzer: That example I'm sure feels very familiar to a lot of people in this room who spend their days chasing down folks at their institution. Are there any last questions for Kleo before we wrap up today's session? Please join me in thanking Kleo for giving such a thoughtful and extensive presentation.
[Applause] And thank you all so much for coming. We will be sending out a very brief evaluation form following the presentation today. And hope to get some feedback from you both about the workshop as well as other topics you would like to see us organize programs on in the future and this really is sort of responding to your interest and needs and the issues that you see at your own institutions. If you have ideas for workshops please let us know. We also have, just two weeks from now, a workshop that is going to be at the museum of modern art. Cindy do you want to say a few words about that?
Cindy VandenBosch: The workshop we are holding is January 29th, Tuesday from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. at MoMA, and we'll send out when we send out the evaluation via email we'll also include some information about the upcoming workshop. There is still space available. We partnered up with an organization called GRASP which is a nonprofit organization with members who themselves are on the autism spectrum and this session will provide an opportunity for members of GRASP to share their experiences of coming out to cultural institutions and there will be a question and answer period as well.
Danielle Linzer: Finally, thank you very much to the Guggenheim Museum for hosting us today and to our excellent captioner. Thank you, Jeanette.
Cart Provider: Thank you so much. Have a great evening.
Kleo King: Just one last thing, my contact information is up here but I also have business cards. You can call me with questions. I'm out of the office a lot. You could email me. Probably email because I'm sitting on the train and I'm on my oldfashioned Blackberry.