Frequently Asked QuestionsEdit
How do I get my Disability Pass?Edit
Dragon Con Disability Services [DCDS] doesn't give out a "Disability Pass." We will give you one or more stickers that will be attached to your Dragon Con membership badge that identify access to standard reasonable accommodations. You can buy the badge either online or onsite, however you like. If you are able to go thru the regular registration line, you should. With the new scanner system that is used for badge purchasing, it might actually be faster than having us run it for you.
If your disability prevents you from going through the line, you just come to the DCDS location, just outside On-Site Registration in the basement of the Sheraton. We can run your registration for you while you discuss any reasonable accommdations you need with us.
Whether we get your badge or you do, you will still need to see one of the DS volunteers so that those stickers we mentioned can be provided. Each person's situation is different, and our staff will discuss what accommodations may work best for you. If you are requesting to use any 'by request' services, like interpreters or large print programs, we need to know in advance, so those items can be prepared or scheduled.
Here are my medical details, do I have a disability?Edit
Under the Americans with Disabilties Act of 1990, A disability is legally defined as "a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities. [...] To rise to the level of a disability, an impairment must significantly restrict an individual's major life activities. Impairments that result in only mild limitations are not disabilities." All DCDS services are operated to conform to the requirements of State and Federal Law. While we share the Dragon Con commitment to exceptional customer service, we do our best to balance limited resources so that your accommodation gives you the ability to participate in our event at the same level as any other con-member.
DCDS staff can't make determinations as to whether or not you have a disability, as we assume that you are the best judge of that. We can only determine if an accommodation you request can be provided or not. That will be based on the discussion you have with us when you request the accommodation.
Here are my medical details, what will you give me?Edit
While DCDS staff will be happy to listen to any medical information you chose to share with us, we will not require you to do so as a condition of the provision of service, as your medical details are protected information under the the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. Under the ADA, however, we are entitled to ask some questions about how the effects of your disability affect your attendance at Dragon Con. Those conversations will be held in strict confidence, with DCDS staff taking every effort we can to assure your privacy.
Quite often, the madness of the registration process on Thursday and Friday lead people to mistakenly believe that accommodations are "one size fits all" and that we make those decisions based on a snap judgement based on appearances. Reasonable Accommodation is a negotiated process, and we can't stress enough the following basic concept:
We cannot provide you what you don't tell us you need
Don't be afraid (or embarrassed) to discuss any issue that might affect your attendance. While we may not be able to provide an accommodation for them all, we may be able to provide a suggestion for a solution that you may not have thought of.
Please look at our Self Advocacy page for more information.
Pregnancy and DisabilityEdit
Unfortunately, a pregnancy is only considered a disability if there is "sufficient medical involvement to substantially affect activities of daily living not normally affected by pregnancy" which is a high standard to meet in most cases. Do stop by the DCDS table to discuss this with our staff, though, if you think that this affects you.
To be honest, we hate saying no. Most of DCDS staff are con-members with disabilities just like you, and we really want all of us to have a fabulous time. But when it comes to reasonable accommodations, we are trying to do the best we can for everyone, and sometimes that means we may respond negatively to a request. Remember, though, that if we say no to one request doesn't mean we believe that you aren't eligible for any services. We really do appreciate you cooperation in what we know can be a difficult process.