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I must admit, I write this column feeling like I just composed the first #AccessibleAnthro piece of last year, “Celebrating 30 Years of the ADA.” Yet here we are. Welcome to 2021!

At AAA, we are proud to continue to nurture the culture of accessibility within our communities. In 2020, we trained presenters on accessible practices for every AAA webinar. During Raising Our Voices, we encouraged collective access by asking all presenters to prepare accessible materials: accessible introductions, screen-reader friendly PDFs, lists of terms, transcripts for their recordings, and more! Because of the financial generosity of attendees who contributed to the Raising Our Voices accessibility subsidy, we were able to provide CART captioning for all 110 livestreamed events and American Sign Language interpretation for 15 livestreamed events, as well as simultaneous interpretation for two Spanish-English bilingual sessions. Thanks to your involvement, we were able to support a greater variety of access needs than ever before.

In 2021, we will continue to grow and improve our accessibility initiatives. As we look ahead to a season of springtime AAA section meetings in a virtual world, we invite everyone attending, presenting, and otherwise engaging in section meetings to maintain accessible practices. Check out our accessibility tips, tricks, and tools page to see how you can support an accessible virtual meeting environment.

The accessibility work we are doing at AAA and as anthropologists continues to spread within and beyond our profession, and there’s lots more to come this year. If you have any questions, suggestions, or want to get involved with our accessibility initiatives, you are always welcome to contact us at [email protected]. Stay safe, and let’s keep making our spaces accessible for as many people as we possibly can!

Nell Koneczny is the AAA’s accessibility and meetings manager.

Cite as: Koneczny, Nell. 2021. “Welcome to 2021.” Anthropology News website, March 12, 2021. DOI: 10.14506/AN.1598

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