Sensory Accessible Event certification is a first for an event in the region and in World Expo history .When Expo 2020 Dubai welcomes the world from 1 October, people of determination will be at the forefront of the visitor experience – a fact confirmed by Expo’s international certification as a Sensory Accessible Event.
In acknowledgment of Expo’s pledge to host the most accessible and inclusive World Expo in history, it has become the first event in the Middle East, North Africa and Asia region – and the first World Expo – to receive the International Board of Sensory Accessibility (IBSA) certification. The landmark recognition was presented to Expo 2020 by Sensory Access – the body responsible for assessing Expo’s accessibility measures – at an event to mark World Autism Awareness Day (2 April), held at Terra – The Sustainability Pavilion.
Among the innovative measures that helped secure the certification are four on-site Quiet Rooms for visitors experiencing sensory overload or anxiety, downloadable social stories from the Expo website that share sensory information on the wide array of visitor experiences, and ‘Sunflower Lanyards’ for those who wish to discreetly signal that they have a hidden disability.
Other features set to be introduced include the PODium app, developed in collaboration with SAP, an Official Premier Partner of Expo 2020, designed to help people of determination navigate Expo, with features such as 3D visual mapping, audio navigation and haptic feedback; 3D tactile models of Expo’s flagship architecture; scannable codes for self-guided experiences narrated through sign language, audio description and written captions; hearing induction loops; and service dog relief areas.
Beyond the six-month event, Expo 2020 aims to create long-term opportunities for the UAE’s people of determination, working in collaboration with the Ministry of Community Development on meaningful employment opportunities that build their professional skillsets and work-experience portfolios.
Tickets to Expo 2020 Dubai will be available free of charge for all people of determination, and at half price for their companion. Meanwhile, accessibility will be on the agenda during event time with Tolerance and Inclusivity Week, part of a series of thematic programming addressing key global issues.