[hackerspaces] thinking (and talking) about how accessible our spaces are (or aren't)

Leigh Honeywell leigh at hypatia.ca
Fri Sep 10 00:15:06 CEST 2010

Probably the most insightful and concise document I've read on the topic
is the WisCon Access page:


WisCon is a large (1100-person) feminist science fiction convention with
a history of working really hard on access issues.  I think the stuff
they've run into and thought through maps pretty well to hackerspaces,
except maybe in the scale of things :)

I feel like the WisCon doc covers most issues hackerspaces are likely to
run into except for chemical smells from equipment.  If you're
interested in reading more on the topic, a couple more resources I found


Human Resources Development Canada's Guide to Planning Inclusive
Meetings: http://www.hrsdc.gc.ca/eng/disability_issues/doc/gpim/guide.pdf

Hope that helps!


On 10-09-09 05:49 PM, Sylva1n wrote:
> Great initiative.
> Is there any checklist-style document you would recommend that lists
> the main accessibility do's and don't's, or permits a easy assessment
> of accessibility issues?
> On Thu, Sep 9, 2010 at 1:46 PM, Leigh Honeywell <leigh at hypatia.ca> wrote:
>> This is a call to action, inspired by a blog post[0] about normalizing
>> talking about accessibility in the same way we talk about parking
>> availability, cost, time, location, etc. when we talk about events, but
>> which I think is also relevant to general info about hackerspaces as
>> many of our spaces hold regular non-event-events such as open houses,
>> parties, and so on.
>> If you scroll down to the bottom of the "location" page on the HackLab
>> site, you can see the note we've included about the space's accessiblity
>> (and lack thereof):
>> http://hacklab.to/location/
>> We've also started including mention of relevant access issues on event
>> postings (laser and makerbot fumes?  not so likely when we're running a
>> food event, but then allergies come into play, etc.)
>> It's a small, low-effort thing, but can make a big difference to people
>> who might have not participated in your community otherwise, and I'd
>> like to invite other spaces to consider doing something similar on their
>> interweb presences.  I'm totally happy to help draft this kind of access
>> statements, if anyone wants to mail me offlist.
>> Another fun thing would be to get various access issues added as a
>> thing-people-can-sort-by on the wiki, but that's beyond my wiki-fu.
>> Moar access == moar awesomeness!
>> -Leigh
>> [0] from FWD/Forward, a fascinating blog about gender and disability
>> issues: http://disabledfeminists.com/2010/09/09/normalising-accessibility/
>> _______________________________________________
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