Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.

ABAI Events: Accessibility, Accommodations, Safety, and Inclusion Information

 

ABAI secures event sites years in advance. In doing so, several factors are considered for the location, size, and costs. Additionally, ABAI considers sociopolitical context for safety, welcomeness, and inclusion. While each event location differs, the core features of our events are listed below.

 

50th Annual Convention: Important Phone Numbers

In the case of a security, medical, or other safety issue during the event, please call these phone numbers. More information is available in the Event Space Emergency Procedures section of this page.

 

Philadelphia Convention Center: (215) 418-4911

Marriott Philadelphia Downtown: (215) 625-6077

 

Accessibility

ABAI is committed to providing a welcoming, accessible environment for all attendees. If you require an accommodation for a disability, please contact us at convention@abainternational.org. Our team will confirm and communicate as needed for follow-up and on-site support. We will make every effort to accommodate all requests within the logistical limits of our venues.

 

As a Presenter

Presentations are normally given from a stage requiring a few stairs to reach. Speaker podiums/lecterns are 3’ 10” tall, and speakers are typically expected to present from the podium/lectern standing up for the duration of the presentation, especially if the microphone is in a fixed position. Seating is available for the presenter before and after their presentation. Panel sessions will have seats pre-arranged on stage. If there are any issues with this set up, please communicate with ABAI early to discuss accommodations such as a step, stool, or ramp.

 

For the Audience

Below are a few accessibility resources for presenters to consider incorporating during their session to create an inclusive and accessible environment for their audience.

 

  • Captioning: Presenters may turn on the captioning (subtitles) during their presentation. PowerPoint, Google Slides, and Keynote applications have easy-to-use captioning support and instructions (see resources and links below). Turning on the captioning feature allows your microphone to capture your speech and displays it as text directly on your slides in real time. 
  • Readability: Strong contrast between the text and background colors makes the slides easier to view. Larger text sizes also help – try to avoid using font sizes smaller than 18pt. Sans serif fonts are most readable. Additionally, try to avoid placing a lot of text on the very bottom of your slides, as folks in the back may not be able to see it. 
  • Descriptions: When displaying a table, graph, or image, it is helpful to talk through and describe the various reference points, rather than gesturing to the screen. It is also helpful to give a brief description of what is in a video before you play it to the audience. 
  • Q&As: If your session incorporates questions from the audience, please have them use the microphone and/or you can repeat the audience member’s question before answering so everyone knows what was asked. 

 

Getting Around

At every event, ABAI will make full use of the available facilities, and in some cases, events will be spread out across buildings or venues. ABAI works with the hosting venue to ensure that there are many places to sit and rest in hallways, near session rooms, in lobbies, and in any other available space, depending on the location.

 

Many locations will include a map and/or interactive map on their websites, which we will provide as applicable. Please note that the maps are illustrative and the rooms and/or seating may be arranged differently for our events.

 

General accessibility and mobility resources across the U.S. are available in the Resources section at the bottom of this page. Additional local resources will be made available before each event. Event Seating

 

Event Seating

At ABAI events, we ensure that each room has wheelchair/scooter seating available on a first-come, first-served basis. Anyone with limited mobility or who is using a mobility device such as a scooter, walker, crutches, or wheelchair may wait near the front of the line to use this accessible seating. There will be limited, marked accessible seating in each session room for those with hearing and/or visual impairments. For onsite help, please alert an ABAI staff member (wearing a red shirt).

 

Restrooms

All U.S.-based event sites must comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). For non-U.S. locations, ABAI contracts with venues and facilities that have restrooms that are accessible for all guests.

 

Personal and Parental Supports

Personal

Two rooms will be available for specific personal uses at the Philadelphia Convention Center. Room 100 A will serve as a prayer or meditation room. Room 100 B will serve as a designated quiet or sensory-break room. Individuals may access the rooms based on immediate needs, but ask that attendees please consider the purposes of each room and be respectful of other individuals. The rooms will be unlocked and available during normal event hours.

 

Childcare/Sitter Services

Below are some licensed sitter agencies, with fully background-checked sitters who will come to your hotel room to provide childcare at competitive rates. Please note that this information was sourced online, and ABAI is not affiliated with these service suppliers.

 

Nursing Room

A Mamava pod will be available for nursing. It is located near the concierge desk between Hall A and Hall B. No key is needed to access the pod, and it locks securely from the inside.

 

Report Safety, Discrimination, and Harassment Incidents to ABAI

ABAI staff have protocols in place to support members. In the event a member feels unsafe or has experienced harassment or other incident, locate an ABAI staff member in a red shirt. ABAI has a policy on sexual and other harassment, a communications policy, and a form for constituents to report such incidents via the website which is also accessible via the ABAI events app.

 

Event Space Emergency Procedures

Please review the information below regarding emergency protocols. In the case of an emergency outside of the event space or hours, please call 911.

 

Security 

The Philadelphia Convention Center has advanced security protocols in place within the event spaces and works with the local police, fire, and medical dispatch. If you have a security concern at the convention center, the Philadelphia Convention Center’s Command Station can be reached at (215) 418-4911 or at ext. 4911 on the beige house phones. For any security concerns at the Marriott Philadelphia Downtown, including lost and found inquiries, the in-house security team can be reached at (215) 625-6077 or at ext. 6077 from a house phone.

 

Medical 

In the case of an emergency, call facility security from any house phone at ext. 4911 or at (215) 418-4911. The Philadelphia Convention Center will contact the on-site EMS or the Philadelphia Fire Department Rescue Unit as needed., as well as protocols with the local 911 service. For non-emergency situations, see nearby health care facilities, including:

Thomas Jefferson University Hospital
1015 Walnut St
#401
Philadelphia, PA 19107

myDoc Urgent Care
1420 Locust St
Philadelphia, PA 19102
(215) 800-1909

Friends Urgent Care
917 Arch St
Unit 107
Philadelphia, PA 19107
(267) 703-2345

Pharmacy
Walgreens Pharmacy
1617 John F Kennedy Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19103
(215) 561-1316

 

Fire

If a fire is suspected at the convention center, contact the Philadelphia Convention Center’s Command Station at (215) 418-4911 or at ext. 4911 from any beige house phone and give the location of the suspected fire.

 

Facilities will have fire detection and suppression systems with notification of and response to fires. Upon verification of a fire, area or building evacuation will take place using alarms—usually a combination of strobe light and tone alarms—throughout the building, along with notifications and assistance from security and building staff.

 

Suspected Active Shooter

  • Evacuation—Get out of the building or area even if others won’t follow. Help others escape, if possible. Take an evacuation path away from the suspect. Warn others as you escape. Do not attempt to move wounded people. Do not rush toward officers, keep your hands visible at all times, and follow all of their commands. Update police with the suspect’s description and location.
  • Lockdown—Do not leave your current location if you feel the suspect will see or find you. If you can, gather those around you and go to the nearest room with a locking door. Once inside, lock the door and barricade it with heavy objects. Try to prevent being seen. Turn off lights and close drapes or blinds. Sit or lie on the floor next to the wall with the door and be as quiet as possible. Silence your cell phone. Do not answer or open the door for anyone. If you are found and unable to get away, throw objects, yell, and continue to defend yourself. 

 

Suspicious Items

Do not touch any suspicious-seeming items. Immediately report the item by calling the Philadelphia Convention Center’s Command Station at (215) 418-4911 or at ext. 4911 from any house phone; or (215) 625-6077 or ext. 6077 if the item is found at the Marriott Philadelphia Downtown. 

 

Resources

Captions/Translations

There are many resources available for using captions and translations in your presentations.

  • Microsoft Office:
    • Step-by-step instructions and best practice for making your PowerPoint presentations accessible. [Link to instructions]
    • PowerPoint for Microsoft 365 can transcribe your words as you present and display them on-screen as captions in the same language you are speaking, or as subtitles translated to another language. [Link to instructions]
  • Google Slides:
  • Apple Keynote:
    • Create accessible documents, spreadsheets, or presentations with Pages, Numbers, or Keynote. [Link to instructions]

 

Accessibility/Mobility

General resources across the U.S. are available below. Additional local resources will be made available before each event.

 

Accessible Public Transportation

At many locations, ground transportation companies are able to pick up passengers with mobility aids curbside at the airport. This section will be updated with location-specific information.

 

Scooter and Wheelchair Rental

 

Not Seeing What You Need?

If you require an accommodation that is not listed above, please contact us at convention@abainternational.org. We will make every effort to accommodate all requests within the logistical limits of our venues.

 

Modifed by Eddie Soh
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