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Conference 2022: Your questions answered

Find answers to your frequently asked questions about Accord's Conference 2022

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Attending in-person

Everything you need to know about conference if you're attending in-person.

Covid procedures during conference

Covid procedures during conference

The following guidance should be followed by all in attendance at conference 2022. 

It's importance that we all act responsibly and support each other, particularly those who are most at risk from Covid, or are providing care to other vulnerable people. By following these guidelines as much as is practically possible you're helping us keep everyone at conference safe.

Covid is very much still with us, and while vaccines have provided us with a degree of protection, infection levels are still high, and we must remain vigilant.

Covid symptoms

We ask that anyone who experiences any Covid symptoms does not attend conference. The NHS recognises 12 main symptoms of Covid. The main symptoms include:

  • a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
  • a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal
  • general cold or flu like symptoms

Visit the NHS website for the full symptoms list Coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms in adults - NHS (www.nhs.uk).

Should you develop any of the symptoms of Covid during conference or get a positive lateral flow test result you should immediately take steps to isolate yourself from your fellow delegates at conference and contact our Conference Liaison officer, Krisna Lakhani.

Covid testing

Everyone in attendance should take a Lateral Flow Test (LFT) before entering the conference venue each day - so you'll need to test once on your day of travel before conference commences, and you'll need to bring one with you to test yourself on the second day of conference. You don't need to bring proof of your LFT test to show us.

As the UK Government has ended the free availability of LFTs for most people, you should obtain your tests from your work as you normally would do. If you have any problems, please let us know and we'll advise you of what to do.

Face Masks

We'll be providing everyone in attendance with a face mask as part of your conference pack upon arrival. It is your choice whether you wish to wear a mask during the conference sessions, and we would ask you to be respectful of people's choices. If you are uncomfortable being around others who aren't wearing masks, talk to us and we'll ensure we can accommodate a safe space for you during the conference sessions.

Social Distancing

We've reduced the number of delegates and visitors that will be in attendance at conference to ensure a reasonable distance between everyone in the conference venue. While there are no strict social distancing rules in place, we'd ask you to be respectful of individuals needs for space and to ensure safe distances can be maintained by sticking to the seating arrangements we've put in place. This may mean you don't get to sit next to someone you'd intended to be by, but there will be plenty of time for you to network and socialise outside of the conference sessions.

Handwashing

It's important to continue good handwashing practice. Hands should be regularly washed with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. In addition to this, hand sanitiser will be available throughout the venue.

Cleaning Protocol

All personal belongings, including papers, should be removed at the end of each day of conference to allow delegate tables to be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected in the evenings. Don't leave anything in the conference hall unless it's rubbish to be disposed of.

Which motions are being debated at conference?

Which motions are being debated at conference?

The Standing Orders Committee (SOC) met for 3 days from 21st April to work through all the motions that were submitted. The final agenda of motions to be debated at conference 2022 is now available. You can access this using the button below.

It’s important you take time to read through the motions so you’re aware which are being debated at conference, and so that you can decide whether you wish to speak in favour or against a motion. We've produced guidance on how to prepare yourself to speak on a motion.

View motions for debate

Will I be able to submit an emergency motion?

Will I be able to submit an emergency motion?

Emergency motions may be admitted to the agenda during conference as per the arrangements of standing orders. Emergency motions must be lodged with the Standing Orders Committee by 6pm on Thursday, 19th May and must refer to circumstances which did not exist, or information which was not available, before the declared closing date for the receipt of conference motions (13th April 2022) - for example it could be a matter arising as a result of a business announcement that occurred after the closure of the original date for submission of motions. 

Emergency motions should be submitted by email to [email protected]


    What is the easiest way to travel to conference?

    What is the easiest way to travel to conference?

    Conference is being held at the Mercure Manchester Piccadilly Hotel in Central Manchester.

    We’re recommending that delegates travel by train – Manchester Piccadilly station is only half a mile from the hotel (approx. 8-minute walk). There’s also a bus and tram stop just outside for those who prefer not to walk from the station.

    For those flying, Manchester airport is nine miles from the hotel. You can catch a train from the airport to Manchester Piccadilly station which takes around 20 minutes. The trains run every 10 minutes, 7 days a week.

    We’re not recommending that delegates travel via car as parking at the hotel is limited.

    Travelling by car

    If you're travelling by car and will be making use of the limited spaces in the hotel car park, use postcode M1 4DY to ensure you arrive at the car park instead of the hotel front door. Be sure to read the FAQ relating to parking too!

    Do I need to book my own travel arrangements?

    Do I need to book my own travel arrangements?

    Yes, it’s up to you to book your travel. We ask delegates to book their travel as soon as possible to take advantage of the cheapest fares.

    You’ll be able to claim back your travel costs using the online expenses claim form. See question on how to claim back travel expenses for more info.

    Will the hotel provide breakfast, lunch and dinner?

    Will the hotel provide breakfast, lunch and dinner?

    In short, yes. But there are some occasions where you’ll need to sort yourself out. Here’s a summary of when you’ll be fed and how much you can claim back:

    Thursday 19th May

    • Breakfast: Only delegates travelling before 8am can claim back for breakfast. You can claim up to £5 for your breakfast (please keep all receipts).
    • Lunch: Lunch will be provided for all delegates at the hotel
    • Dinner: Dinner will be provided for everyone who opts in to attend the gala dinner. If you choose not to attend the gala dinner, you have the freedom to sort your own dinner for this evening. You can claim up to £25 for this (please keep all receipts).

    Friday 20th May

    • Breakfast: This will be provided by the Mercure Hotel for anyone staying overnight on Thursday 19th May
    • Lunch: Lunch will be available after conference ends. If you need to get off quickly for travel arrangements, we’ll ask the hotel to make take-out boxes available.
    • Dinner: Most of you would have made it home in time for dinner. However, if you’re still travelling after 8pm, you can claim up to £15 for dinner this evening (please keep all receipts).

    How do I claim back expenses for food and travel?

    How do I claim back expenses for food and travel?

    We’ll reimburse your travel costs however you travel to conference. We’ll provide most of your food but there may be times where you need to sort yourself out (see above). You should submit your expenses via the online expenses claim form. You can do this prior to conference or after.

    You must remember to keep ALL receipts for anything you claim back and upload them to your claim form. We cannot pay claims that are not supported by valid receipts.

    Submit expenses claims

    What’s the start and finish times for conference?

    What’s the start and finish times for conference?

    The event will start for in-person attendees at 12pm on Thursday 19th May. We have a surprises session which you won’t want to miss. We’ll head into a lunch break at 1.30pm and the main conference will kick off at 2.30pm.

    The event will draw to a close around 1pm on Friday 20th May.

    Has my accommodation been booked?

    Has my accommodation been booked?

    If you’ve confirmed you’ll need accommodation on your delegate requirement form, then yes. A room will have been booked for you at the Mercure hotel.

    Do I need to check-in when I arrive?

    Do I need to check-in when I arrive?

    There’ll be no need to formally ‘check in’ at the hotel reception desk on arrival. Accord staff will be issuing room keys after conference adjourns for the day on Thursday 19th. On arrival, make your way to the main conference room to sign in and collect your conference pack – there’ll be lots of staff on-hand to point you in the right direction.

    What’s the dress code?

    What’s the dress code?

    Conference is pretty relaxed so we advise delegates to wear business-casual attired. Delegates like dressing up for the gala dinner on the Thursday evening – some will wear dresses/suits whilst others will wear jeans and blouses/shirts. It’s completely up to individual preference!

    Can you tell me more about the gala dinner?

    This is our ‘showpiece’ event to which all conference attendees are invited. There’ll be a 3-course dinner followed by live music and dancing. This year’s band is The Fuss (check them out on Facebook @thefuss.manchester)

    Can we post about the event on social media?

    Can we post about the event on social media?

    Yes – but be careful and use your common sense when posting. We know it’s an exciting occasion but remember, you should consider yourself ‘at work’ during conference.

    If you’d like to post about conference on social media, use #AccordConference2022

    Tell me about parking at the hotel

    Tell me about parking at the hotel?

    Parking at the hotel is limited and spaces cannot be reserved. If you do manage to get a parking space at the hotel car park, we advise you to pay on arrival. All you need to do is scan the car park QR code (this will be displayed in the car park, on the main doors of the hotel and at the hotel reception) and pre-pay for your parking. 

    Navigating to the car park

    Use postcode M1 4DY to ensure you arrive at our car park instead of the hotel front door.

    Parking rates

    • Up to 15 minutes – Free
    • Up to 4 hours – £8
    • Up to 10 hours – £15
    • Up to 24 hours – £20

    Prices are per vehicle; blue badge holders receive complimentary car parking upon display of a valid blue badge. Limited spaces are available. Parking in allocated hotel-designated bays only. Vehicle registration must be added at reception by the vehicle owner. Failure to complete this may result in parking fines.

    How to pay

    Hozah Autopay detects you entering and exiting the car park, then collects payment automatically once you leave. One-time setup for automatic payments at this car park, and all other Hozah Autopay car parks across the UK.

    Pay at https://hozah.com/1011

    If you forget to pay for parking before exiting the barrier, you’ll receive a fine which you’ll be liable to pay.

    Pay for parking

    How to vote on motions

    Voting

    Once the proposer or ‘mover’ of the motion has given their speech to conference, followed by any delegates who support or oppose it, they'll be a vote on the motion. Voting will be conducted electronically - whether you're a delegate attending in person or virtually, you'll have the same access to vote. Only conference delegates attending in-person or virtually have the ability to vote on a motion - ordinary members, and other guests won't have the function to vote within the conference app.

    What you'll need in order to cast you vote

    To cast your vote for or against a motion you'll need the following:

    • A charged smartphone (Android or iOS). If you don't have a suitable device, please let us know at [email protected] and we'll organise a device for you to use for the duration of conference.
    • The conference app downloaded and installed (we'll add a link to the app here once it's available).
    • To be logged into the conference app - you'll receive this information from us ahead of the conference.

    How to vote

    We've got instructions for downloading, logging into, and voting on the conference app.

    Access voting instructions

    Bar & restaurant guide

    Bar & restaurant guide

    We've put together a selection of local bars and restaurants if you decide to go out and about in Manchester.

    View bar & restaurant list

    About WiFi in the conference venue

    About WiFi in the conference venue

    Free WiFi is available throughout conference, provided by the venue.

    • In the conference hall and conference floor, you can use the Conference WiFi connection - the password is Mercure24
    • Throughout the rest of the hotel, you can use the public/Guest WiFi named Mercure

    I've got a question that's not answered here

    I've got a question that's not answered here

    If you have any questions about conference, please email them to [email protected] and we'll get back to you as soon as we can.

    Attending virtually

    Everything you need to know about conference if you're attending virtually.

    Which motions are being debated at conference?

    Which motions are being debated at conference?

    The Standing Orders Committee (SOC) met for 3 days from 21st April to work through all the motions that were submitted. The final agenda of motions to be debated at conference 2022 is now available. You can access this using the button below.

    It’s important you take time to read through the motions so you’re aware which are being debated at conference, and so that you can decide whether you wish to speak in favour or against a motion. We've produced guidance on how to prepare yourself to speak on a motion.

    View motions for debate

    Will I be able to submit an emergency motion?

    Will I be able to submit an emergency motion?

    Delegates may admit emergency motions to the agenda during conference as per the arrangements of standing orders. Emergency motions must be lodged with the Standing Orders Committee by 6pm on Thursday, 19th May and must refer to circumstances which did not exist, or information which was not available, before the declared closing date for the receipt of conference motions (13th April 2022) - for example it could be a matter arising as a result of a business announcement that occurred after the closure of the original date for submission of motions. 

    Emergency motions should be submitted by email to [email protected]


      What’s the start and finish times for conference?

      What’s the start and finish times for conference?

      For online delegates, the main conference will kick off at 14.30 on Thursday 19th May and will run to 17:30.

      On Friday 20th May we'll be kicking off at 09:30 and will draw conference to a close at around 13:00.

      We'll send you the invite to join the event online, and we'd ask you to login around 10 minutes before the event is due to start as we'll be kicking off on time. 

      Voting

      Voting

      Once the proposer or ‘mover’ of the motion has given their speech to conference, followed by any delegates who support or oppose it, they'll be a vote on the motion. Voting will be conducted electronically - whether you're a delegate attending in person or virtually, you'll have the same access to vote. Only conference delegates attending in-person or virtually have the ability to vote on a motion - ordinary members, and other guests won't have the function to vote within the conference app.

      What you'll need in order to cast you vote

      To cast your vote for or against a motion you'll need the following:

      • A charged smartphone (Android or iOS). If you don't have a suitable device, you won't be able to cast your vote.
      • The conference app downloaded and installed (we'll add a link to the app here once it's available).
      • To be logged into the conference app - you'll receive this information from us ahead of the conference.

      How to vote

      We've got instructions for downloading, logging into, and voting on the conference app.

      Access voting instructions

      Can I participate in the event?

      Can I participate in the event?

      As an online delegate you'll still be able to participate during conference. We've got a tightly managed programme, so to ensure a smooth running we've asked delegates that wish to speak either in favour or against a motion to indicate this to us before conference begins. This way all delegates, whether in-person or virtual have the ability to contribute.

      Due to the complexity of running a hybrid conference, online delegates won't be able to ask questions during sessions with our guest speakers, however you'll be given the opportunity to submit questions for these sessions in advance of conference beginning. The conference chair will manage the available time for questions and will ask questions submitted in advance on your behalf - time permitting of course.

      I've got a question that's not answered here

      I've got a question that's not answered here

      If you have any questions about conference, please email them to [email protected] and we'll get back to you as soon as we can.