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Planning and budgeting

Are we committed to promoting accessibility in our action and action plans and in our longer-term strategy?
Who makes decisions and choices in our organisation? 
How are choices made?
Is there diversity in our workforce?
Who do we work with?

Let's commit and decide what to do

Careful planning helps cultural operators to make their activities accessible. Overall guidelines are set and value choices are made in strategies and visions, and budgets ensure line by line that adequate resources are allocated to accessibility solutions. Good planning sets out what concrete measures are needed, when they will be taken and who will be responsible for them. This makes it easier to achieve the objectives.

Mainstreaming accessibility into all planning

In everyday cultural work, various action plans are drawn up. All planning should include equality, diversity and accessibility aspects: in action plans, in financial planning, in project plans, etc. Plans should specify the means by which equal opportunities and services for all will be promoted.

Plans focusing on equality

The purpose of the Equality Act is to prevent discrimination on any ground relating to a person. The law imposes an obligation to promote equality. All public authorities, education and training providers and employers who employ more than 30 people are required by law to have an equality plan. Although it is not compulsory for everyone, it is worth doing so. Read more: Non-Discrimination Act (PDF; finlex.fi).

A good equality plan combines different perspectives. It should include accessibility, equality issues and diversity issues. It is important that the plan covers the whole range of activities, from work within the organisation and staff to work with partners, target groups and customers.

A separate accessibility plan should include an overview of the current state of accessibility and development measures for different aspects of accessibility, for example over a five-year period. The accessibility plan should cover both internal and external activities and all types of activities and services.

The Gender Equality Act aims to prevent discrimination on grounds of sex. The Equality Act also prohibits discrimination on grounds of gender identity and gender expression. The law imposes an obligation to promote gender equality. It requires public authorities and employers with 30 or more employees, as well as all education and early childhood education providers, to have an equality plan. You can combine the equality and non-discrimination aspects in one equality and non-discrimination plan.

Help from external experts

You can use your own organisation's situation as a basis for planning. Accessibility and accessibility surveys can be commissioned from experts. The mapping will show where improvements are needed and make it easier to include objectives and measures in the plan.

You can also get expert help from outside your own organisation to help you draw up an accessibility plan. See, for example, the offer of the Culture for All service: Services and cooperation.

How to make a good accessibility plan

To get started, it is necessary to identify attitudes and assumptions within the work community. Unacknowledged norms may have guided the work of the workplace, for example, preventing diversity of staff and creating barriers to accessing services. An open and respectful atmosphere in the organisation is a prerequisite for resolving uncertainties about, for example, the encounter of a minority group.

  • Map the current situation as a basis for planning.
  • Ensure that the planning process and the plan itself inspire your work community to work towards improving accessibility and diversity. It is important that all staff are involved and engaged in the planning process. Managers should also be involved and engaged.
  • Organise accessibility training for staff.
  • Form a team to draw up a sufficiently concrete action plan. Monitor the implementation of the plan.
  • Define the responsibilities of employees. Schedule the tasks.
  • Make and check plans with users: plan together and test your ideas, plans and measures, get feedback from your audience and stakeholders.
  • Collaborate with accessibility and diversity experts and experience specialists.
  • Aim for a diverse workforce. Ensure that recruitment processes support this objective. 
  • Budget money for accessibility solutions such as procurement and interpretation services. 
  • Record accessibility costs on their own lines in both the base and project budgets.
  • Even if there are obstacles along the way to promoting accessibility, such as protecting the historic environment or the conflicting needs of different audiences, solutions can usually always be found.

Who plans and decides

Open and transparent decision-making supports the promotion of accessibility. Within an organisation, equality is enhanced, for example, when all staff members have the opportunity to influence planning. It is easier to commit to objectives if you are involved in the decision-making process. In addition, planning cooperation with experts and communities outside the organisation helps to make good choices.


Without budget lines dedicated to accessibility solutions, it is more difficult to put solutions into practice. Verbalising accessibility in budgets and procurement provisions makes accessibility measures and opportunities visible in everyday operations. 

Remember to budget for example:
Surveys, repairs and assessments 
  • accessibility mapping, if not done
  • accessibility repairs and improvements needed in all areas, including staff areas
  • external expert assessments of the accessibility of online services
  • website
  • intranets
  • other digital services
Adaptations, aids and interpretation for staff working and collaborating in-house
  • necessary adaptations 
  • the necessary aids 
  • interpretation and translation 
Accessibility of artistic content and events
  • sign language videos
  • written interpreting
  • simultaneous and whispered interpreting
  • figurative interpreting 
  • sign language interpreting
  • interpretation between spoken languages
  • spoken interpreting
  • subtitling of live performances
  • subtitling of recordings 
  • translations 
  • interpretation
  • hire and loan of aids and equipment
  • aids
  • Braille material
Expert fees
  • fees of experience experts
  • fees for sensitivity readers
  • expert fees 
  • user evaluation and testing of web accessibility: fees 
  • testing of services

Staffing and recruitment

Society is diverse and this should be reflected in the diversity of workplaces. Equal opportunities for employment belong to all. Removing barriers creates a more equal society and realises the rights to work, to be an actor and to participate. A concrete way to reach out to people from different minority groups, for example, is to explicitly state in recruitment advertisements the intention to reach out to applicants regardless of, for example, disability, sexuality, gender or religion. It is also important to explain in the recruitment advertisement how accessibility has been taken into account in the application process. Accessibility in the application process includes, for example, whether there are alternative ways of contacting for further information, whether any forms used are accessible, whether there are alternatives to filling in the forms and whether the accessibility and accessibility information for the interview location is disclosed. It is important to indicate that any accessibility needs of applicants will be met. The accessibility of the workplace should be described truthfully and accurately, and if there are any accessibility deficiencies, a plan to address them should be provided.

When recruiting: 
  • Explain that you are reaching out to applicants from different minority groups.
  • Practice positive discrimination in a situation where there are two equally qualified applicants.
  • Personal experience of being a minority may also be considered an advantage, depending on the role.
  • Anonymous recruitment can help to ensure that your own unconscious biases do not influence decisions. In some situations, anonymous recruitment can also help to reach a more diverse pool of candidates.   
  • Be sure to include accessibility and accessibility information about the job in your recruitment advertisements and how accessibility has been taken into account when applying. 
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