Making Reception Areas Accessible

The following information is to assist you in assuring that a welcoming environment is provided in your department's public reception areas so that these public spaces are accessible to and usable by your customers with disabilities.

Here are some simple questions that can be asked to help ensure accessibility which is required by state and federal laws.

  • Is the entrance door accessible? (This includes the width of the door, the pounds of pressure needed to open it, and the height of the threshold.

  • Can an individual with a disability move about in the reception area without interference by furniture, planters or similar movable objects? Remember to consider persons with mobility and visual disability issues.

  • Is there sufficient clear space for a wheelchair to turn around, clear floor space in front of objects that is at least 30" x 48", and space for wheelchair seating which is out of the circulation area of the room?

  • If there is a reception counter, does it include an area that is at least 36" wide with a counter height between 28" and 34" above the floor? This space must remain clear and cannot be used for storing equipment or office machines.

  • Is informational and directional signage posted? Is signage tactile (raised letters) and/or Braille? Does the color of signage contrast with the surface it is placed on?

  • Are brochures, publications, applications and/or other forms readily available in alternative formats such as Braille, large print, audio-tape and computer disk?

  • Have procedures been developed for obtaining sign language interpreter services and/or assistive listening devices?

  • Are the public restrooms nearest the reception areas accessible to persons with disabilities?

  • Does the floor plan or layout of the office allow people with disabilities to obtain materials and services without having to request assistance?

  • Does the reception area staff know how to appropriately interact with individuals with disabilities?