ADA/Accessibility Resources & Links for Cultural Organizations

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The Miami-Dade County Depatment of Cultural Affairs recognizes that the issues surrounding ADA accessibility are complex.  When organizations apply to the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs for a grant, they must certify that they will comply with certain federal nondiscrimination laws including the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended. 

The following information and resources are provided to help raise awareness of the various issues with which cultural organizations should be familiar.  We encourage organizations to contact us for further assistance regarding any of these issues.  

You can also learn more about what is required under the ADA for cultural organizations and how you can get grant funding to pay for it by attending an Audience Access (AUD) grant workshop. 

Click here to RSVP to attend an AUD grant workshop.

What is the ADA?*

(*It’s not a person, place or group.)

  • The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a Federal civil rights law that provides protections to individuals with disabilities like those provided to individuals on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, age, and religion.
  • The ADA guarantees equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities in employment, State and local government services, public accommodations, telecommunications, and transportation.
  • Organizations presenting programs to the public and receiving Miami-Dade County grant funds are subject to both Title II** and Title III*** of the ADA, which require effective communication and reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities to attend and participate in funded programs open to the public.

Section 504

  • Prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability and requires federal agencies and any organization that receives federal funding to make its programs and activities accessible to people with disabilities.

**Title II—State and Local Government

  • Requires that all state and local governments (their departments and agencies) give people with disabilities an equal opportunity to benefit from all of their public programs, activities and services (e.g., public education, employment, transportation, recreation, health care, social services, courts, voting and town meetings).

***Title III—Public Accommodations and Services Operated by Private Organizations

  • Requires places of public accommodation to meet architectural accessibility standards for new and altered buildings and remove barriers in existing buildings where such removal is readily achievable; make reasonable modifications to policies, practices and procedures; provide effective communication mechanisms for people with disabilities; and other access requirements.

Helpful resources and links:

Access Statements

Access Training / Consulting / Facilitators:

Access Training / Technical Assistance:

Accessibility Consultant / Architect:

ADA and the Arts, PowerPoint by Heidi Johnson-Wright, Miami-Dade County Director of ADA Coordination Information and Technical Assistance on the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

American Sign Language (ASL) Interpreter Services

Audience Access (AUD) Grant Program for Cultural Organizations

Audio Description Services: Miami-Dade County:

  • Marj O’Neill-Butler (Miami Theater Center) 305-458-0604
  • Martin Steffani (Arsht Center) 305-899-6869
  • Judith Traum (Arsht Center) 305-665-0507

Braille Translation Services:  Miami Lighthouse for the Blind

Captioning Services:

Designing for People with Partial Sight and Color Deficiencies:

Downloadable Disability Access Symbols

Florida Access Coalition for the Arts (FLACA)

Florida Relay Service - 711

How to file an ADA complaint with the Department of Justice

Institute for Human Centered Design

Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts (Resources for Arts Administrators)

Legal Advocacy:  Disability Independence Group

Miami-Dade County ADA Office

Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs ADA/Accessibility web page

National Endowment for the Arts: Accessibility Resources

Sensory-Friendly Toolkit for Cultural Organizations

Smithsonian Guidelines for Accessible Exhibition Design

State of Florida Division of Cultural Affairs Accessibility Resources

The Americans with Disabilities Act - Practical Information You Can Use, PowerPoint by Heidi Johnson-Wright, MDC ADA Coordinator

United States Access Board

VSA Florida: The State Organization on Arts and Disability

Website and Accessible Electronic Technology Consulting and Training

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It is the policy of Miami-Dade County to comply with all of the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act.  To request materials in accessible format, sign language interpreters, and/or any accommodation to participate in Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs sponsored programs or meetings, please contact Francine Andersen 305-375-4634 /, at least five days in advance to initiate your request. TTY users may also call 711 (Florida Relay Service).