Fiserv Forum, home of NBA basketball franchise the Milwaukee Bucks, has become the latest sports venue to introduce sensory rooms.
The 17,341-capacity arena now contains two dedicated sensory rooms for guests with sensory processing needs to use during all events. The arena also offers complimentary sensory bags with tools, such as noise-cancelling headphones.
In addition, more than 800 event staff members have received training on how to recognise and assist fans with sensory needs.
People with autism, dementia, PTSD and other similar conditions often experience sensory sensitivities or challenges with sensory regulation. One of the challenges for these individuals is sensitivity to overstimulation and noise, which offers challenges in attending any large and crowded event.
The introduction of the sensory inclusive programme has led to Fiserv Forum being certified as sensory inclusive by KultureCity, a non-profit recognised nationwide for using its resources to effect change in the community for those with sensory needs.
“In our effort to be the most inclusive and accessible sports and entertainment venue in the world, Fiserv Forum is dedicated to providing an enjoyable and accommodating experience for everyone,” said Fiserv Forum director of guest experience Jill Barry.
“We appreciate the support from KultureCity for helping to design the sensory rooms and training our staff in sensory awareness and understanding. We’re proud to offer these important resources to our guests with sensory processing needs so they can fully enjoy the exciting events Fiserv Forum has to offer.”
The two sensory rooms provide fans seeking a quieter or more secure environment a destination to visit in the lower bowl (by Section 110) and upper bowl (by Section 212). Each room includes soothing paint tones, tactile wall hangings and comfortable furniture.
The sensory bags are available at the guest concierge desks, as well as the BMO Club coat check for BMO Club guests. In addition to noise-cancelling headphones provided by Puro Sound Labs and fidget tools, the bags consist of verbal cue cards produced in conjunction with Boardmaker and a KultureCity VIP lanyard.
Prior to visiting Fiserv Forum, guests can download the free KultureCity app to view what sensory features are available and where they can access them. A Social Story is also on the app to provide a preview of what to expect while enjoying an event.