Where do assisted performances sit in your organisation? – part 3
To find out where assisted performances sit in your organisation, you can start by asking these questions:
- Are there procedures and protocols in place to ensure that the tasks necessary to delivering the assisted performances automatically happen within the flow of work?
Does the Access Co-ordinator (or equivalent) have to chase individuals, on a show by show basis, to make these things happen?
- Is your marketing team informed and confident about marketing assisted performances within their general strategy for each show?
Does the Access Co-ordinator have to prompt and advise on an ad hoc basis?
- Are your box office staff fully briefed about which shows are to be captioned, described and interpreted, and what the booking implications are?
Does the Access Co-ordinator have to provide a targeted briefing whenever relevant?
- Are front of house staff trained and confident in welcoming and supporting D/deaf and disabled audience members?
Are D/deaf and disabled audience members disappointed with the level of service they receive?
- Is the quality of the captioning, audio description and British Sign Language interpretation assessed and discussed in the same way as the quality of the rest of the artistic aspects of a show?
Is it considered enough simply that the services are available?
- If the Access Co-ordinator is absent and a query comes in about an assisted performance, are there other members of staff who can deal confidently with the inquiry?
Do staff have to take a message and ask the Access Co-ordinator to answer the query on their return?
- If you are a producing venue, do artistic teams recognise the importance of integrating the caption unit into the set design? Is it expected that designers and directors will understand, or at least adapt to, this requirement?
Does the Access Co-ordinator have to advocate for the unit’s positioning with every new production?
- If you are a receiving venue, do you alert producers early in the relationship that you will need a script and a dvd for your captioners, describers and interpreters and clearly state when you need to receive these? Is this embedded in your agreement with producers?
Does the Access Co-ordinator have to liaise independently with producers in order to obtain these items?
- Are your technicians as familiar with the caption unit and with the audio requirements of the description service as they are with more general lighting and sound issues?
Does the Access Co-ordinator have to take responsibility for ensuring that equipment is present and functioning?
- Do show reports include comments on captioning, audio description and British Sign Language interpretation where this is provided?
Are these services seen as something separate from the show which are not considered alongside other aspects?
- Do you monitor your audiences for assisted performances?
Do you consider it sufficient to have programmed the captioning, audio description and/or BSL interpretation?
- Do you, as a matter of course, gather feedback from audience members using assisted performance facilities?
Does the Access Co-ordinator have to implement specific feedback mechanisms separate from other audience feedback?
- Is the matter of assisted performances included in staff induction?
Are staff expected to pick it up as they go along?
- Do Board and Senior Management value the programme of assisted performances?
Do they regard it as a marginal but necessary activity which is a drain on resources?