November 19, 2019

Greater Columbus Convention Center First to Gain Sensory Certification

The Greater Columbus Convention Center (GCCC) has become the first convention center in the world to be certified by one of the leading organizations focused on inclusive environments for people with autism and other sensory processing challenges.

ASM Global, which manages the Convention Center, collaborated with KultureCity®, a leading nonprofit organization recognized nationally for using its resources to revolutionize community facilities for those with sensory needs and to ensure a comfortable environment for all visitors.

Sensory challenges are most often experienced by those with autism, dementia, post-traumatic stress disorder and similar health concerns affected by overstimulation and noise.

Amy Huggins, the Convention Center’s director of culture and training, says the certification process included staff training by medical professionals on how to recognize guests with sensory needs and handle sensory-overload situations.

“We’re proud to be at the forefront of many innovative programs, and making all of our guests feel welcome, safe and accommodated is at the top of the list,” she said.

The GCCC is now equipped with Sensory Bags for guests to borrow that include special KultureCity® VIP identification badges, noise-canceling headphones, fidget tools, verbal cue cards and weighted lap pads to comfort guests who may not deal well with the hustle and bustle of the Convention Center. Guests also have access to quiet zones.

To prepare for their visit, guests can download the free KultureCity® mobile app to view the sensory features available at the GCCC and the social story providing a preview of what they can expect when they arrive at the venue.

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