man wearing closed captioning glasses with one hand holding front side of frames in theater

Posted February 4, 2023

Accessibility at the Burns

If you’re interested in checking out a film at the Burns and have questions about accessibility, this blog post is for you!

At the JBFC, we are fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Standards for Accessible Design. When it comes to physical access within our buildings, all five theaters at the JBFC Theater, as well as the Jane Peck Gallery, are wheelchair accessible. In addition, we have ADA compliant bathrooms and signage with braille included throughout our facilities.

For our theater seating, we offer wheelchair spaces, companion seats, and designated accessible seats for anyone with limited physical mobility and/or vision loss.

The JBFC also provides assistive devices for filmgoers with vision and hearing loss, including closed captioning glasses, headphone receivers, a hearing loop system, and weekly open captioned screenings.

closed captioning glasses man wearing glasses in theater watching a film, view from over the shoulder

Closed captioning glasses

  • Closed captioning glasses can be provided, subject to availability. These glasses allow you to watch the film and see the captions directly on the lenses.
  • A headphone receiver with audio descriptions can be used simultaneously with the closed captioning glasses for audio, but this doesn’t apply to descriptive text for a film. The receivers offer VI-N (visually impaired narrative), also referred to as audio description, and HI (hearing impaired). There are two volume controls to combine VI-N and HI as needed. Please note that unfortunately, the audio description does not read out subtitles for foreign language films.
  • All of our theaters, including our screening room at the Media Arts Lab, have a hearing loop system. When a filmgoer uses their own T-coil enabled hearing aid or cochlear implant, the system works to enhance the audio during our film screenings and Q&As.
  • At open captioned screenings, moviegoers can view the captions onscreen, much in the same way you would see subtitles displayed for a foreign language film. Films with open captions are offered each week at the JBFC Theater on Sundays (matinees only), Mondays (matinees & evening screenings), and Wednesdays (matinees only). To see current showtimes for movies offering open captions, select a film with the “OC” icon on our website.
  • Unfortunately, not all of the films we screen at the JBFC Theater have closed/open captions or audio descriptions available. To find out if a particular movie offers these features, you can visit our website and check beneath the film title for the closed captioning or audio description symbols.
headphone receiver being held in hands in theater in front of movie screen

A headphone receiver with audio descriptions

We do allow service animals in all JBFC buildings. However, this does not include companion, therapy, or emotional support animals.

If you would like to make an accessibility request, please call day 914.747.5555, ext. 3 on the day of your screening.

We are always looking for new ways to make moviegoing more accessible! Have a suggestion? Contact us at

To find out more, visit our Accessibility page.

Accessibility initiatives are made possible with support from ArtsWestchester.

The Jacob Burns Film Center is proud to receive generous support from:

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