Church Accessibility Policy
An estimated one in five North Americans has a disability, demonstrating that disabilities are a natural part of life and can be acquired at any time. Whether physical, mental, intellectual, or sensory, many of the worst barriers faced by people with an impairment result from attitudes and environments that we create and could change, rather from the functional limitation itself.
Such attitudes and environments exclude people from church.
We believe that everyone should have the opportunity to participate, contribute, and belong to our community. We also believe that people with disabilities positively affect and enhance human diversity and community life. Therefore, in keeping with biblical teachings, with our theological beliefs, and with decisions of our denomination regarding people with disabilities, we, the governing body of [church name], adopt the following policy.
- In this congregation, we value people with disabilities as created in the image of God, as partners to the covenant, and as co-laborers in the kingdom of God.
- We consider all people—with disabilities and without—to have gifts from the Holy Spirit, and we encourage everyone to enrich congregational life by practicing their faith and using their gifts in ministries of discipleship, leadership, and mission.
- We will endeavor to welcome people with disabilities into all ministries and activities of the church. This includes worship, education, small groups, outreach, activities, etc.
- We will seek to name, understand, and attend to the special spiritual, physical, and psychological needs of those of us affected by disabilities, including caregivers, and will offer training to respond appropriately to disability issues and to raise awareness in our congregation.
- We will modify any policy, practice, procedure, or architecture that excludes those of us with disabilities from any aspect of congregational life, and we will accomplish this through ample discussion with all parties involved.
Adopted by [governing body] of [name of church] on [date]