Making events accessible

Planning the event: Expenses


Give participants clear guidance on your expenses policy before the event. Tell them:

Service users who attend meetings should be paid all reasonable expenses associated with their participation. SCIE’s policy on this is that people who use services should never be left out of pocket because they have taken part in a meeting or event. Organisations should consider developing a policy on this issue (if they do not already have one) and ensure this is followed by all staff.

Expenses that are likely to be incurred include travel (which may include the cost of a personal assistant or another person to travel with them), food/refreshments/subsistence, costs of personal assistants or support workers and childcare. Be aware that some people may not be able to use the cheapest options for things like travel and accommodation. For example, public transport may not be accessible for them and cheaper hotels/bed and breakfast houses are also less likely to be accessible to wheelchair users or people with some mobility impairments. Be flexible about reimbursement of expenses and assumptions about what people might need to claim for.

Where possible, try to pay for things like train tickets and hotel bills directly to save people having to use their own money. Alternatively, try to pay people from petty cash on the day of the event.

People said:

I always bring my own personal assistant, but need to know whether this is paid for.

I prefer support to be arranged for me. Tell me whether you can do this and whether you can pay for it.