Dragon Con offers safe spaces for people with disabilities

ATLANTA, GEORGIA - SEPTEMBER 02: A cosplayer dressed as Cleopatra walks in the 2023 Dragon Con Parade on September 02, 2023 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Terence Rushin/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GEORGIA - SEPTEMBER 02: A cosplayer dressed as Cleopatra walks in the 2023 Dragon Con Parade on September 02, 2023 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Terence Rushin/Getty Images) /

Do you ever wonder how Dragon Con helps serve its attendees with disabilities? You’re about to find out!

Dragon Con 2023 happened during the long Labor Day weekend from August 31st to September 4th, with attendance reaching pre-pandemic levels at 65,000. During the five-day event, attendees and even curious onlookers took in the fun and wonder of Dragon Con. There were the creative cosplayers to Saturday’s parade, and hoping to catch a glimpse of their favorite Walk of Fame guest.

While Dragon Con provided fans unbelievable access to pop culture and even a free concert from the dark wave band Crüxshadows, the event went the extra mile to provide accommodations for people with disabilities. For instance, an attendee can get a badge sticker(s) specifically for their disability or disabilities to meet their needs accordingly. Another example is if an individual had to sit down due to physical limits, chairs would be provided to make line waiting a more straightforward experience.

There were even safe spaces for service dogs who came with their respective owners so both humans and dogs could feel comfortable while at Dragon Con.

When I covered for FanSided at this year’s Dragon Con, I was amazed by how well-organized the Disability Services were and how the involved volunteers were willing to guide me with all of the Con’s activities and where to go if I needed assistance. Naturally, it’s never an easy fleet when living with challenges that impact daily life, but when help can be an option, it gives peace of mind.

Access to these services is practical and crucial to disabled participants because their health will be affected when ignored or there’s a lack of services. The anticipation for the event(s) will turn to disappointment, leaving a pained and toxic experience. It’s also following State and Federal laws under the ADA of 1990 that all public locations must have accommodations for disabled people to ensure their safety and way of life.

The Dragon Con folks don’t want their participants ever to feel unsafe or unable to enjoy their time due to their challenges, so implementing a dedicated team and creating top-of-the-line accommodations makes the weekend even better.

What if I am disabled and want to attend Dragon Con from outside of Atlanta?

When it comes to traveling when disabled, which presents a whole new level of uncertainty, anxiety, and overall uneasiness, the first thing one should do if they’re flying is to contact their respective airport and airlines no more than 48 hours before departure. When discussing the situation, include that you, as a flyer are disabled and you require certain accommodations for your journey. These accommodations may include personal assistance, motorized transportation inside the airport to get to your terminal, and other necessary services. Don’t be afraid to speak up and share your concerns. The airport staff are more than willing to help and by providing specialized services for the passengers, it not only creates a better atmosphere between customers and staff but also helps the TSA become better at serving diversity.

Will you be attending Dragon Con in 2024? Let us know in the comments and come back to Culturess for more Dragon Con coverage! 

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