If you need a disability-related accommodation, please contact Eva Whitley or Hope Levy Kott. Requests should be made by July 20, 2009. We will do our best to arrange reasonable accommodations but due to cost considerations may not be able to honor all requests.
Please especially let us know:
- If you will need the Programme Guide or con newsletters in a large print format so we can be sure to produce enough.
- If you need sign interpretation or can volunteer to provide sign interpretation
The Metro system in Montréal is NOT wheelchair-friendly. However, the surface bus system is well equipped to handle wheelchairs, with kneeling buses and fold-up seats. Some discussion on LiveJournal.
At the Worldcon
Think you might need an electric scooter or a wheelchair to get around at Anticipation?
We will have scooters and wheelchairs available at Anticipation. Rental is through the convention itself. Experience tells us that scooters are becoming more in demand for fandom and we don’t know whether we will have the resources to have extras on hand for last-minute requests — so reserve your scooter (or at least let us know that you may be interested) now!
Our supplier already expects to have to bring in scooters from locations across Canada and up and down the eastern seaboard of the United States. Help us get the right number of scooters and wheelchairs by letting us know of your interest.
Send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know what you need. Detailed information (including pricing and insurance) will be available through our website. If you let us know now of your interest, we will also be able to contact you directly once we have pricing information.
For residents of the United States
If you work in the US, and your employer offers a medical flexible spending plan (FSA) as part of a benefit “cafeteria plan,” you may not be aware you can use that to be reimbursed for the cost of scooter or wheelchair rental at Worldcon. A medical flexible spending plan allows you to designate a portion of your income to be put into an account that can be used to cover medical expenses not otherwise covered by health insurance. Such a spending plan can be used to reduce your taxable income. The IRS rules state: distributions from a health FSA must be paid only to reimburse you for qualified medical expenses you incurred during the period of coverage. You must be able to receive the maximum amount of reimbursement (the amount you have elected to contribute for the year) at any time during the coverage period, regardless of the amount you have actually contributed.
You must provide the health FSA with a written statement from an independent third party stating that the medical expense has been incurred and the amount of the expense. You must also provide a written statement that the expense has not been paid or reimbursed under any other health plan coverage. The FSA cannot make advance reimbursements of future or projected expenses. IRS Publication 502, Medical and Dental Expenses states wheelchair or scooter rentals are allowed for a medical condition necessitating their use, so a note from your doctor might be needed to apply for reimbursement. Again, please check with your FSA plan administrator.
Specific questions about the plan should be directed to your medical FSA administrator. I can tell you from experience Ceridian, an FSA vendor, has accepted a receipt from Handicapped Services for reimbursement. (I doubt if they would allow a charge on a FSA plan debit card, but you can always ask your administrator if they would authorize it.) Obviously, if you are hale and healthy, your claim for a scooter simply because you hate walking long distances would be disallowed. However, if your mobility is compromised in some way, and walking long distances would hurt, you may want to reserve a scooter after receiving confirmation from your doctor. The amount for scooter rental could be used to lower your taxable income. (So, for that matter, could the amount you spend on over the counter painkillers.) You don’t have to contribute the entire amount of the rental by early August, so if you elect to contribute $300 annually toward the plan, but have only paid in $200 by early August, you can still submit a receipt for the full $300 reimbursement. Questions? IRS publication 969 has the official policy; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flexible_spending_account offers an overview facts about FSAs, with links to sites from FSA vendors.