Introduction to Action Planning

Under the Disability Discrimination Act, all service providers have a duty to audit and amend policies, procedures and practices to prevent discrimination against disabled people. Developing an action plan will help to break down the tasks involved in making your organisation more accessible.

Some improvements may take a considerable time, especially if funds are to be raised first, but others can be achieved surprisingly easily and at little or no cost.

Key points

  • Plan realistically, taking into account the organisation’s resources
  • Set long – medium – and short-term goals
  • Include time for research / fact finding
  • Consult with and involve disabled people
  • Share experiences with other arts organisations
  • Monitor action plan progress regularly

Action Plan Structure

Follow a similar structure for each section

  • Aim: Outline what you are aiming to do
  • Action: Show the steps that need to be taken
  • Responsibility: Note who is responsible for ensuring that each action is carried out.
  • Date: Give target dates to each step

Issues for action planning

The inclusion of issues for action within each plan will depend largely upon the kind of arts services provided, the size of the organisation and its resources. Consider the following areas:

Access to the arts provision (e.g. performance, workshop)

The nature of the arts provision itself need not change, but you should show plans for changes that will enable disabled people to access the services.

Audience development

Developing audiences of disabled people could be achieved in many ways. Consider changes to programming, new projects, partnerships, improvements to access…

Venue where arts provision takes place

This either where the organisation is based, tours to or visits, and may be an arts centre, theatre, school, tent, castle, field, beach etc. Identify necessary improvements or alternatives.

Organisation’s office base

Whole building, one room, desk in corner of another organisation’s office, working from home… However grand or humble, people need to be able to access your office or alternative meeting places.


Telephone, email, fax, website, text messaging, postal address. Can more be done in offering choices in communication methods? Also consider communication support for people attending events and meetings.

Marketing and publicity

Show how your organisation will be reaching disabled people, increasing accessibility of printed information, and making alternative formats available.

Engaging with disabled people

Plans for bringing disabled people onto your board, or advisory group, working in partnership on projects, consulting on disability issues.


Changes planned in increasing accessibility of employment practice.


Plans for training board members, staff and volunteers in disability equality issues or other disability related training.

Monitoring and evaluation

Show how you intend to monitor and evaluate the developments of the action plan.

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