Commitment to Access
As a collective committed to access, both our public events and our internal processes are informed by principles of anti-racism, feminism, anti-capitalism, anti-colonialism, anti-ableism, and gender and body self-determination. We realize that there is no one solution to dismantling abelism and creating access. The solutions we adopt will not meet everyone’s needs, but we commit to continually improving accessibility of the book fair. We are always learning and appreciate feedback on people’s experiences and their ideas of how we can take positive, proactive, and preventative steps towards making the book fair as accessible and fun as possible.
As a collective, we commit to:
- Holding events in wheelchair-accessible spaces.
- Posting as much pertinent accessibility information as possible on our website in advance of an event.
- Negotiating with venues to maximize various forms of physical accessibility. This may mean providing seating, responding to needs around lighting and temperature, making sure vendors have enough space to be comfortable at their tables, etc.
- Providing all-gender washrooms.
- Communicating in both French and English and striving to use accessible language.
- Organizing free events and offering a limited supply of public transit tickets for attendees.
- Not taking photos of people or using photos in our promotional materials without consent.
- Negotiating the sharing of space at our events if needed. If you are concerned about sharing space with someone, please get in touch with us before the event.
- Engaging thoughtfully with feedback we receive about our events. At the bookfair we will: provide an anonymous comment box, send out an anonymous survey following the bookfair, and verbally check in and out with vendors on the day of the bookfair. We are also always open to other forms of feedback, for example at queerbetweenthecovers[at]gmail.com.
For the bookfair, we additionally commit to:
- Negotiating and asking about access needs from vendors in advance so we can ensure participation from all those interested.
- Accounting for wheelchairs, scooters, and other mobility aids when determining the space needed between tables and the width of aisles/corners.
- Working to create a scent-reduced environment. This includes providing scent-free soap, asking attendees to be aware of our guidelines, and ensuring that people smoke away from entrances.
- Providing a quieter area for attendees to hang out in if they want to be in a calmer space without having to leave the bookfair.
- Serving free vegan food and coffee.
- Offering free child care.
- Providing travel stipends and billeting for out-of-town vendors whenever
possible, although due to limited funds we unfortunately cannot guarantee either of these things.
- Having bilingual “point people” available to provide active listening and negotiate any concerns that may arise.
These guidelines are a work in progress!
We would love to hear any feedback you may have on them.
If you wish to attend the bookfair and have questions regarding specific accessibility needs, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.