East Kingdom

Office of the Accessibility Porter

Category: Porter News

2017 Spring Announcement

Unto the people of the East from Alayne, EK Porter,warm greetings!

As my term serving our glorious Kingdom in the capacity of Porter draws to a close, I would like to thank everyone for the opportunity I have had to be able to make the East a wonderful example of inclusiveness and accessibility.

Northern Region War Camp in Glenn Linn will mark the terminus of my service in this particular aspect, as the Porters serve under the auspices of the Seneschalate, with a limit of two consecutive terms.

At this time I would like to thank all those good gentles who have acted as my Deputies, the excellent Web Ministers who have helped us create and maintain this site.

Thank you also to all the fine Event Stewards who allowed me space for Accessibility Hours, and thank you to the people who attended these workshops.

I encourage anyone seeking a positive and proactive way of serving the East to consider putting in for this Office or working for the Office of the Porter in other ways.  During my tenure I have met amazing individuals, both in and out of the Kingdom.  Positive changes have occurred and will no doubt continue to occur because of the East Kingdom’s continuing commitment to courtesy and  accessibility.

Again, I thank you for this time in office and look forward to serving the East in other ways in the future.

Your humble servant,


Alayne Alexandra Nyvern Nightwatcher, OP

Updated: May 6, 2017 — 10:06 pm

Social skills for autonomous people. — Respecting wheelchair users who can walk

Source: Social skills for autonomous people. — Respecting wheelchair users who can walk


People use wheelchairs for a lot of different reasons.

Some people use wheelchairs because they are paralyzed and completely unable to walk. That is not the only reason people use wheelchairs, and many wheelchair users have some ability to walk.

Here are some reasons some people who can walk use wheelchairs:

  • They can walk, but it’s very difficult and not an efficient way of getting around
  • Walking causes them severe pain
  • Walking is medically inadvisable because of the strain it would put on their heart
  • They have cognitive problems that make walking more difficult than wheeling
  • Falling causes them to break bones, and they are unsteady on their feet and fall easily
  • They can’t stand in place because they need to be moving to stay upright
  • They can walk some days but not others

If you see someone use a wheelchair sometimes and walk other times, don’t assume they don’t need their chair. If you see a wheelchair user stand up to reach something, don’t assume that they don’t need their chair.

People use wheelchairs for a lot of different reasons, and many people who can walk some absolutely depend on wheelchairs for mobility.

Disability is complicated, and personal. There are a lot of reasons that people use various types of adaptive equipment. (None of which are the business of strangers). Knowing one reason people use something doesn’t mean you know all the reasons, or that you are in a position to assume you know what’s going on with everyone you see using adaptive equipment.

tl;dr: Many wheelchair users can walk some. They still need their wheelchairs. Don’t assume that someone isn’t really disabled just because you see them walk or stand sometimes.

Updated: September 4, 2016 — 2:39 pm

SCA Board of Directors Announces New Committee Structure to Replace Grand Council | East Kingdom Gazette

The message posted below was posted on the East KingdomGazette on 8/24/2016

Source: SCA Board of Directors Announces New Committee Structure to Replace Grand Council | East Kingdom Gazette 


At its August 22, 2016 meeting the Board of Directors approved the development and implementation of an expanded Board committee structure to encourage and facilitate transparency, participation in and understanding of Society governance throughout the membership of the Society.

The Board shall establish Board committees to serve at the pleasure of the Board. Each of these committees will include representatives of the membership-at-large of the Society, to be nominated by the Kingdoms. A request for nomination process is expected to be in place for the initial committees in the 4th quarter of 2016. Committees to be established include the following:

  • Finance and Audit – Mission: assist the Board’s oversight of the Company’s accounting and financial reporting processes, the audit and integrity of the Company’s financial statements and the qualifications and independence of the Company’s independent auditor
  • Risk Management – Mission: Oversee insurance, legal, and related matters.
  • Nominating and Governance – Mission: recommend to the Board the persons to be nominated for appointment as directors; recommend to the Board the directors to be appointed to each committee of the Board; develop and recommend to the Board Society governance guidelines and policies
  • Communications – Mission: develop and oversee advertising; public relations; publications, social media and other communications initiatives of the Society
  • Membership – Mission: grow and sustain membership in the Society; evaluate and oversee implementation of programs and initiatives for membership support

The Board has also formed the following ad hoc committees to serve until their mission is completed in the discretion of the Board:

  • Youth Activities – Mission: Completion of design and implementation of YAFA programs
  • Technology – Mission: Prepare 5-year technology development plan for Society
  • Peerage – Mission: Review proposals for the creation of new peerage

From time to time the Board may form other ad hoc committees for special projects. The Board has the authority to dissolve or modify any committee or its membership at any time. Committee members serve at the pleasure of the Board, subject to a 3-year term limit. Initial appointments may at the discretion of the Board be for staggered terms so that the term of all such members of a committee do not expire at the same time. Committees will make recommendations to the Board and give quarterly reports. Committee members will be appointed by the Board and Committee chairs designated by the Board. Committee members at large will be nominated in response to a Request for Nomination (RFN) sent by the Board to each Kingdom Seneschal, describing the mission of the committee and suggested minimum qualifications for committee members. Kingdoms may then (within a defined period of time) nominate individuals in their Kingdom. Nominations would be made by the sitting Crown with the advice and consent of the Kingdom Seneschal.

Comments are strongly encouraged and can be sent to:
SCA Inc.
Box 360789
Milpitas, CA 95036

You may also email comments@lists.sca.org.

This announcement is an official informational release by the Society for Creative Anachronism , Inc. Permission is granted to reproduce this announcement in its entirety in newsletters, websites and electronic mailing lists.

Updated: August 27, 2016 — 7:33 pm

2016 Summer Message


I am Ariana of the North, Northern Region Deputy Accessibility Porter. That’s a mouthful. Just use Porter for short. From reading a thread on the East Kingdom Facebook page, I see that there is some confusion and lack of information about service dogs at events. I going to try to help clear things up a bit. Caveat: I am not a lawyer, if I say anything that does not agree with the Federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations, then the ADA is correct, and I am not.

Service dogs (and in rare occasions miniature horses) can be the difference between someone being homebound and being an independent person out in the world. They can change and save lives. The ADA allows for service dogs to be in places where pet dogs cannot be.

Let’s start with what a service dog is; a service dog is a dog “that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual, or other mental disability.  The work or tasks performed by a service animal must be directly related to the individual´s disability. Examples of work or tasks include, but are not limited to, assisting individuals who are blind or have low vision with navigation and other tasks, alerting individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing to the presence of people or sounds, providing non-violent protection or rescue work, pulling a wheelchair, assisting an individual during a seizure, alerting individuals to the presence of allergens, retrieving items such as medicine or the telephone, providing physical support and assistance with balance and stability to individuals with mobility disabilities, and helping persons with psychiatric and neurological disabilities by preventing or interrupting impulsive or destructive behaviors. “(ADA §36.104 Definitions)

There is no formal paperwork or registration of service dogs.

 Due to changes in the wording of the ADA back in 2011, only dogs and miniature horses can be service animals. So, no more service cats, service ferrets, etc.

An emotional support dog or a therapy dog are not service dogs. They do not get the protection of the ADA regulations. “These terms are used to describe animals that provide comfort just by being with a person. Because they have not been trained to perform a specific job or task, they do not qualify as service animals under the ADA. However, some State or local governments have laws that allow people to take emotional support animals into public places. You may check with your State and local government agencies to find out about these laws. “(Frequently Asked Questions about Service Animals and the ADA, Q3)

So, that’s a description, what does that mean for event stewards and seneschals?

Well, it means that people will show up to events, meetings and practices with their service dogs.

Now, if there is no official paperwork, how can you tell if the dog is really a service dog? You are allowed to ask the handler two questions:

  • Is the animal is required because of a disability?
  • What work or task the animal has been trained to perform?

You are not allowed to ask what the disability is or any other medical questions.

Task is the key word, the animal must be trained to do something; “The crime deterrent effects of an animal´s presence and the provision of emotional support, well-being, comfort, or companionship do not constitute work or tasks for the purposes of this definition.” (ADA § 36.104 Definitions)

Pretty much, you have to take the handler’s word on it, if they tell you the task that the animal is trained to perform.

So, now the dog is on site, but it’s running loose, barking , growling, snapping or otherwise being a nuisance or danger. Are you stuck? Nope.

Service dogs are supposed to be very well trained in staying calm and obedient while working. If the dog is not calm and obedient, you can ask the handler to control the dog. If that doesn’t work, you can tell the handler to remove the dog from the site, and allow the handler to return without the dog.

What if someone is allergic or afraid of dogs? Unfortunately for that person, the handler is still allowed to bring the dog in. So, something to consider is if your group holds meetings, practices or events at a members house, then those are public events, and service dogs have to be allowed in. If the site host owner doesn’t allow dogs in their home, you may need to look for a new meeting/practice/event site. The site has to be open to all who come.

There are people who will lie and say their pet is a service dog. It’s unfortunate, but true. They may buy a vest that says “service dog” and have a pile of paperwork to show you. The best you can do is ask the allowed questions, and watch the dog and handler. Hopefully, the dog is well behaved and not a nuisance.

More information can be found at these websites:

The East Kingdom Office of the Accessibility Porter


Americans with Disabilities Act Title III Regulations


ADA Service Animal Fact Sheet



Updated: June 21, 2016 — 7:20 am

2015 Spring Message and Accessibility Wish List

My current Accessibility wish list is as follows:

  • People who are interested in Silent Heraldry.
  • Articles on how physically challenged individuals coped and thrived in our period of study.  (Examples:  Richard the III with his deformed spine, Götz of the Iron Hand, and even Odin was visually impaired!)
  • Stories of successful retrofits of sites for better Accessibility written up to benefit others.

If you see me at events, come by and say hello, but be warned, I may try to get you do stuff!

2015 Spring Message

Unto the Seneschal/es, Event Stewards and Populace of the Laurel Kingdom of the East, from your servant Alayne, Accessibility Porter, greetings and warm wishes for good health!

Good Gentles,

You will see a small but vital change to the online event listing form.  It will now be including a box which will ask  “Check this box if the site is accessible per the Kingdom Accessibility Porter’s checklist.”

Be not afraid!  This is not a dire question, nor should it bring fear into the hearts of those who labor long to find event sites.  This is a simple step in a thought process.  It asks, “if someone contacts you about any of the many accessibility issues which many of your fellow SCAdians deal with on a daily basis, will you have an answer?”

This box indicates that you are prepared to respond to an inquiry as to whether or not someone will be safe and comfortable in dealing with a disability at your event.  Sometimes, sadly, that answer will be “no.”  Other times, it will be “yes.”  This box prevents your reply from being, “huh?”

Accessibility issues, and the office of the Porter are not a barricade to utilizing event sites, but rather a spring board for dialogue between event staff and event attendees.  It will help the special needs community make their best choices as to which events they attend, just as we all have always made our best informed choices as to which events we attend.

The day of the event is the busiest time for both Event Steward and Hosting Group; the dialogue regarding site Accessibility should be completed before this time.   The new box will help to prevent back up at the Gate from an attendee asking a question which would have best been asked prior to arrival, of a volunteer who might have no concept of how to answer.  It will save time and in many cases temper.

The Office of the Accessibility Porter (or more simply: Porter) is ready to assist in the ongoing needs of both event personnel and the general populace, as well as our specific demographic in creating a culture of inclusion.

Should you have questions, my Deputies and I are here to assist you.

Yours in service,


Updated: June 3, 2016 — 9:52 am
This is the recognized Web Page for the Accessibility Porter of the East Kingdom of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. and is maintained by: Webminister This site may contain electronic versions of policy and governing documents. Any discrepancies between the electronic version of any information on this site and the printed version that is available from the originating office will be decided in favor of the printed version. Copyright 2004-2016 East Kingdom of the SCA. The original contributors retain the copyright of certain portions of this site. For information on using photographs, articles, or artwork from this website, please contact the web minister Webminister. They will assist you in contacting the original creator of the piece. Please respect the legal rights of our contributors. Frontier Theme