United Center certified as sensory inclusive

Families with sensory needs will find the United Center to be a more welcoming place these days.

Working with KultureCity, a nonprofit pushing for change when it comes to accommodating sensory needs, The United Center has become the first sports and entertainment venue in Chicago to receive sensory inclusivity certification.

In taking steps to better serve people with sensory needs, including children and adults with autism, dementia, PTSD and other conditions, during its events, the organization announced this week that staff has been trained to recognize guests with sensory needs and how to properly handle sensory overload. Blackhawks and Bulls front office staff also has received training.

In addition, the United Center will have sensory bags available, which contain noise canceling headphones, fidget tools, verbal cue cards and weighted lap pads. Sensory bags can be picked up at Guest Relations Booths located inside Gates 2 and 6 on the 100-level, Section 221 and Section 325. A designated quiet room will also be available at Section 115.

“It is truly a heartwarming moment to know that you will be able to see families attend a basketball or hockey game, a true community binding experience, with their loved ones who have a sensory challenge and were not able to previously attend. Our communities are what shape our lives and to know that the United Center is willing to go the extra mile to ensure that everyone, no matter their ability, is included in their community is amazing,” says Traci Johnson, KultureCity executive director, in a news release.

More information about sensory resources at the United Center can be found by emailing GuestRelations@UnitedCenter.com.

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