AN ‘Inclusive Places’ Mayoral Charter Mark is being launched on Tuesday 3 May, to recognise visitor attractions, hotels and hospitality venues that ensure equality of access for all.
It is designed to help businesses across the hospitality and visitor economy sectors understand the requirements of deaf, disabled and neurodivergent individuals, by building equality into all elements of the experiences for guests and visitors.
The scheme shows the individual features of each location, focused around communication, physical and sensory access.
The aims are to:
- Highlight and improve accessibility and inclusive practice within the hospitality, culture and events sectors
- Raise awareness of the barriers that exist
- Highlight and encourage training for staff
- Ensure new buildings and planned refurbishments have good access
Each organisation signing up to the charter mark, will commit to creating and implementing a plan to achieve best practice accessibility in the most appropriate way.
The scheme has been trialled by National Museums Liverpool (NML), which operates the Museum of Liverpool, the International Slavery Museum, Lady Lever Art Gallery, Sudley House, Walker Art Gallery, World Museum Liverpool and the Maritime Museum.
They already offer sensory tours and inclusion days, are about to launch tours for people who would prefer to access venues out of hours, have a dedicated programme for babies at several museums and galleries and have developed a breastfeeding charter.
They will be presented with their Charter Mark on Tuesday 3 May at the Museum of Liverpool.
By signing up to the charter, organisations agree to operate to the following principles:
- Welcoming people regardless of their differences in age, agility, mobility, senses or perception
- Welcoming people with children in buggies, prams, and pushchairs
- Welcoming mums who want to breastfeed
- Recognising that people with certain conditions are excluded by poor design of places and systems
- Committing to equality awareness staff training
Assistant Mayor and Cabinet Member for Culture and Visitor Economy, Cllr Harry Doyle, said:
“Liverpool attracts millions of visitors every year and we want each one of them to have the best possible experience while they are here, including when planning visits to the city.
“We want our city to become a model of best-practice accessibility, through our community and business leaders advocating for places and spaces that are accessible for all.”
Cllr Pam Thomas, Cabinet lead for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, said:
“It is not always obvious who disabled people are – inclusion and access is about more than just things like level access.
“It is a win-win for everyone because inclusive and accessible spaces attract a bigger customer base, which is good for business, economic development and tourism. If someone has a good experience, they will tell other people about it and visit again.”
Director of National Museums Liverpool, Laura Pye, said:
“National Museums Liverpool is very proud to have earned the ‘Inclusive Places’ Mayoral Charter Mark for our venues. The Charter Mark is a very important recognition of our commitment to inclusivity, and ensures that this remains central to all of our work. We’re thrilled that our museums and galleries are the first venues in Liverpool to be recognised in this way.”
Liz Stewart, Interim Head of the Museum of Liverpool, added:
“The Museum of Liverpool is honoured to be hosting the launch of this important initiative for the city. As a museum for everyone we place inclusivity at the heart of our work, and we’re very proud to have earned not only the Mayoral Charter Mark, but to have also been recently voted the most accessible museum in the UK for people with mobility issues.”