Disability Modification Policy

Research Society on Alcohol (RSA) Disability Modification Policy

November 2023

Introduction: RSA is committed to providing an inclusive and accessible environment for all conference participants, including those with disabilities. We aim to facilitate full attendance and participation in the conference of all attendees including individuals with disabilities. This policy outlines the procedures for requesting and providing such modifications.

Scope: This policy applies to all conference activities, including presentations, workshops, and meetings, both in-person and virtual.

Reasonable Modification:

RSA is committed to making conference events meaningfully accessible and providing requested reasonable modifications, which may include paying for any associated expense of a modification. RSA will make reasonable modifications in policies, practices, or procedures when necessary to provide RSA’s services to disabled persons unless such modifications would constitute an undue burden or fundamentally alter the nature of the services. Modifications that would pose an undue burden to RSA or fundamentally alter the nature of the services provided are not considered reasonable. (28 CFR § 36.303). When evaluating whether an undue burden exists, RSA considers: (a) the nature and net cost of the accommodation requested, taking into consideration the availability of tax credits and deductions, and/or outside funding; and (b) the overall financial resources of RSA in the provision of the modification and the effect of providing the accommodation on RSA’s available resources.

If a requested modification is denied due to undue burden or because it would fundamentally alter the nature of the services provided, RSA will evaluate whether another modification may be provided without posing an undue burden or fundamentally altering the nature of the services. If such a modification is available, RSA will provide that modification. 

Requesting Modifications:

  1. Early Notification: Participants needing modifications are encouraged to notify the conference organizers by completing the accommodations request form during the proposals/abstracts submission process. Link to modifications request form is also located at the bottom of this policy.
  2. Contact Information: To request accommodations or discuss specific needs, please contact the RSA Executive Office at info@researchsocietyonalcohol.org no later than March 1 if presenting and no later than 60 days before the conference begins if not presenting to ensure timely evaluation of the request. We strive to review these requests promptly and work with individuals to provide reasonable and appropriate modifications.

Types of Modifications:

  1. Accessibility: We will make every effort to select conference venues that are accessible to individuals with disabilities, including wheelchair ramps, elevators, accessible restrooms, meeting rooms, exhibition areas, and social spaces.
  2. Communication: Automated captioning services and assistive listening devices may be made available upon request. Conference materials, including presentations and handouts, may be made available in accessible formats upon request, such as large print, or electronic versions compatible with screen readers.
  3. Presentations and Sessions: Speakers are encouraged to use inclusive presentation practices, such as providing clear verbal descriptions of visual content and using accessible slide designs. Session rooms can be equipped with assistive technology, such as captioning or amplification systems.
  4. Assistance and Support: Conference staff are available to provide assistance and support to individuals with disabilities. Designated staff members are available to address accommodation-related inquiries and provide on-site assistance as needed.
  5. Feedback and Improvement: We value feedback from attendees regarding the effectiveness of our accommodations. Attendees who wish to provide input and suggestions are welcome to provide those to Kara Lawrence, RSA Administrative Director, at klawrence@parthenonmgmt.com or (615) 314-5122.

Responsibility: The RSA Executive Office is responsible for evaluating modification requestions and responding to the same.

Feedback and Concerns: If you encounter any issues related to disability accommodations during the conference or have concerns about accessibility, please contact Kara Lawrence, RSA Administrative Director, at klawrence@parthenonmgmt.com or (615) 314-5122. We take your concerns seriously and endeavor to resolve concerns promptly.

Conclusion: RSA is dedicated to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion in the scientific community, including by striving to promote accessibility of its conference to individuals with disabilities. We welcome all participants and strive to create an accessible and welcoming environment for everyone.

This policy is subject to periodic review and may be updated as needed to better serve our participants. We appreciate your cooperation in making RSA an inclusive and accessible event for all.

Disability Modification Request