Disability Inclusiveness Guidelines

Disability Inclusiveness Guidelines

NCSPP 2025 Mid-Winter Conference
Disability Inclusiveness Guidelines
Adapted from guidelines written by Julie Williams, Psy.D. and Carrie Pilarski, Ph.D.

In an effort to encourage further disability awareness and inclusiveness among conference participants, we are asking that attendees consider the following:

1. Remember, disability intersects with multiple diversity variables including but not limited to age, gender, race and ethnicity and that not all people are disability identified, regardless of presence of disability.

2. Remember, that disability comes in many forms, those that are visible and those that are invisible. Be aware of this as you are discoursing about disability. Assume nothing.

3. Be inclusive of those living with chronic health issues, as these individuals are often excluded from the spectrum of disability.

4. Be aware that mental health disability is also considered to be part of the disability community. As psychologists we are comfortable talking “about” those we diagnose, forgetting that we are those people. 

5. Please be aware of environmental barriers and be willing to participate in addressing those barriers. For example, as you move into and out of assemblies, please consider placing chairs back in their places to avoid creating obstacles in walkways and thoroughfares.

6. Please consider asking yourself if using the stairs or an escalator is a viable option, particularly during high traffic times, and give priority for elevators to those with mobility issues and/or other chronic health issues that may make climbing stairs difficult, dangerous and/or impossible. 

7. Please recognize the limited options for accessible bathroom stalls and leave those for individuals who might only be able to utilize those stalls.  

8. When a microphone is located in a presentation room, use it. Likely, a participant has requested amplification and has had many presenters assume it’s just overkill and not necessary.

9. Feel free to offer support or assistance to others, but wait to hear from the person about what they would like rather than making assumptions. In other words, be flexible. 

10. And finally, just for kicks…try only entering and navigating conference events via
disability-accessible means…and take the time to offer feedback for improved inclusivity.

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Founded in 1976, NCSPP is an organization composed of delegates from programs and schools of professional psychology.