Code Revision September Update

An overview of discussions held during the Code of Practice Revision Accessibility Focus Group and the Accessibility Open Consultation. 

Illustration by Emily Johnson.

Accessibility Focus Group

The Accessibility Focus Group met for the third time in August and included seven artists and arts workers with disability. The meeting was facilitated by Daniel Savage.

The group discussed the content of the revised Code of Practice in regard to specific topic areas and how accessibility applies to these individual topics. The topics covered were exhibiting, selling work, and commissioning and funding.

The meeting included discussion on:

  • Clarity around the expectations artists and audiences should have for organisation accessibility and artwork accessibility.
  • Whether there should be a basic requirement that everyone meets in terms of access.
  • Where responsibility lies in terms of making an exhibition or artwork accessible and sharing this responsibility between the exhibiting organisation and the artist.
  • How to navigate artworks that might not be accessible.
  • Legitimising accessibility costs and factoring these into budgets.
  • Requiring accessibility costs in funding application budgets.
  • Having separate funding pools for accessibility for artists with disability applying for funding.

Accessibility Open Consultation

A group of 12 artists and arts workers met in September to discuss the topic of accessibility in the Code of Practice and how the Code of Practice can be accessible for a range of audiences. The consultation was facilitated by Daniel Savage.

This group further expanded on the ideas and discussion points that have been raised by the Accessibility Focus Group. The group raised some ideas for making the Code of Practice more accessible such as using illustrations, audio and easy read formats, as well as breaking the Code of Practice down into smaller, easier to understand parts. The group agreed that the text should pose questions rather than listing specific actions or advice in order to be more relevant in a wide range of situations.

The group also discussed industry issues in relation to accessibility and working with artists with disability. This included:

  • Capacity and resourcing within arts organisations.
  • Artists with disability providing unpaid advice to organisations.
  • The role that support people play in artist careers.
  • Time structures and deadlines placing pressure on artists to deliver to unrealistic deadlines.
  • The additional costs that artists with disability often incur.
  • How access to and receipt of NDIS and government support payments affect the way artists with disability work.

Further consultation is needed in regard to the effect of NDIS support and government support payments on the way artists work.