Accessibility & Inclusion

If you have questions, concerns or would like to provide feedback on any of the below efforts of inclusion and accessibility, please email Director of Programming Rebecca Fons: rfons@artic.edu


BUILDING ACCESSIBILITY

The Film Center is fully ADA accessible.
Both of our theaters are equipped with hearing loops. Switch your hearing device to T-Coil program to use, or request a headset and transmitter from the box office.
We strive to make our theater convenient for guests who use wheelchairs or mobility devices and their companions. Spaces have been designated to accommodate two wheelchairs or mobility devices in each auditorium, providing unrestricted sightlines. Up to four companion seats, if needed, have been set aside next to each wheelchair-accessible area. If contiguous seats are not available, companions will be seated as close as possible to the accessible location. We ask that all patrons respect the needs of our patrons who use wheelchairs and their companions with the understanding that they may be asked to relocate if sitting in one of the designated companion seats.
 

OPEN-CAPTION SCREENINGS

Whenever possible, the Gene Siskel Film Center will theatrically present films with open captions, to accommodate our deaf and hard of hearing audiences. We rely on distributors of the films we present to provide us with open caption capability, and often older films do not come with this accessibility feature. A screening that is noted as “OCAP” will be presented with open captions. All of our virtual programming, including films and virtual conversations and lecture series, have closed caption capability through Zoom.

 

CONTENT CONSIDERATIONS

The Gene Siskel Film Center is proud to present films and programs that entertain, inform and challenge audiences. Based on lived experiences, the content we put on our screens may impact our individual audiences in different ways. To that end, when possible and appropriate, we include an online content consideration on film and program titles that may include potentially harmful content, depictions or themes. We encourage audiences to also inform themselves on the content of films and programs by reading synopses, watching trailers, and exploring film reviews. Thank you for being part of our effort to make all Film Center audiences feel safe and welcome in our spaces.

 

LAND ACKNOWLEDGMENT

The Gene Siskel Film Center acknowledges the land we occupy is the unceded ancestral homelands of the Council of Three Fires: Ojibwe, Odawa, and Potawatomi Nations, and a meeting place for other indigenous nations, including the Miami, Ho-Chunk, Sauk and Fox, Kickapoo, Peoria, and the Sioux. Through a series of deceitful treaties and discriminatory policies, colonial settlers displaced these Native communities from their homeland. The forced removal of these nations gave way to strife, disease, and discrimination, and these once powerful nations dwindled. In spite of this colonization, Native and Indigenous people have endured. Over 170 tribes are represented in Cook County alone and Chicago continues to be an important location with the third largest Urban Native population in the United States.

Cinema historically omits, erases or falsifies this important history. As Chicago’s premier art house cinema, we are responsible for centering film in true historical and cultural context, which is ultimately entangled with the colonization of this land.

It is our commitment and our mandate to be a leader in the decolonization of history and culture. We recognize our institutional complicity: we are hosting this and future programs, discussions, and presentations on Native land. True acknowledgment can only be made through action.

We commit ourselves to reflecting authentic Native and Indigenous stories on screen by working with filmmakers and distributors who embrace these voices; we commit ourselves to putting films in contexts that explore authentic histories; and we commit ourselves to building partnerships with organizations that can enable and sustain conversations around Native and Indigenous storytelling and representation.

When we cannot meet these commitments, we will audit our operations and programming to understand why, and endeavour, continuously, to do better. This acknowledgement was written specifically by the Film Center.