Please be sure to check back for any changes or updates as policies are subject to change.

Given the nature of COVID-19, ABA cannot guarantee a 100% safe event for all attendees. If you attend the event in any capacity you acknowledge that you recognize this reality. That said, ABA will do everything we can to support the safest environment possible for attendees including the following guidelines:

  • In-person attendance at Children’s Institute (Ci2023) is limited to individuals who are fully vaccinated for COVID-19, including children accompanying adults. Everyone attending must be vaccinated and must upload their vaccination card to HealthShield. (See “HealthShield” info in tab above.)

    NEW FOR Ci2023: If you verified your vaccination card to attend Children’s Institute 2022 (Ci10) or Winter Institute 2023 (Wi2023), you will not need to upload a card for Ci2023, and will not receive a text from HealthShield.
  • Attendees must have had 2 Pfizer, 2 Moderna, or 1 Johnson & Johnson vaccine. 
  • Boosters are not required but are strongly recommended, per the CDC.
  • These policies are subject to change should the CDC recommendations and/or guidelines change prior to the event. 
  • Although ABA is requiring vaccinations for attendees, others at the Hilton Milwaukee City Center and the Wisconsin Center may not be vaccinated and we cannot require that their employees be vaccinated. 
  • We offer a virtual event following each in-person event to make programming accessible to those who cannot attend.
  • We have partnered with HealthShield in order to verify the vaccination status of all attendees. Due to our COVID vaccination requirements and the need for a unique, secure, and GDPR-compliant way to communicate with attendees, cell phone numbers are required for this event and will be collected at registration. Note that HealthShield is not an app, so there is nothing to download. HealthShield is GDPR compliant and US Department of Commerce “Privacy Shield” compliant. Their security measures meet or exceed all current industry standards.
  • Approximately three weeks before the event, those who need vaccine verification will be contacted by HealthShield via text, and will need to upload the front of their vaccination card to show their name.
  • If the name on your card does not match the name that will appear on your Ci2023 badge, please email so that we can alert HealthShield.
  • Attendees are strongly encouraged to wear masks while attending the event, but masks are not required. Attendees are required to wear masks in settings where more than one person is sharing a computer screen, like IndieCommerce one-on-ones. ABA will have masks available at the event, while supplies last. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own masks as well.

All attendees will be able to choose from different colored lanyards to attach to their badge, which will indicate your comfort level with others approaching you. You can switch out lanyards depending on your comfort level at the time.

  • GREEN = handshakes/fist bumps welcome
  • YELLOW = elbow bumps and a little space appreciated
  • RED = no handshakes and lots of space please
  • As we all know, COVID is part of our lives now and the risk of contracting COVID is always a possibility. The recent experience at similar large events indicates that it is likely that someone at every large event has COVID. With this in mind, attendees will not be required to notify ABA if they test positive once the event has begun, nor will ABA be notifying everyone in attendance if anyone tests positive. Attendees should take precautions, as outlined above, and if they have greater concerns we understand that they may choose to not attend.
  • We request that if you’re not feeling well at any point during your stay, or if you are experiencing any signs or symptoms of COVID-19, to please get tested, regardless of vaccination status or prior infection. For convenience and to prevent possible exposure to others, we recommend you bring your own COVID tests to the event.
  • Attendees are strongly encouraged to bring at-home COVID tests to test themselves as needed during the event. 
  • The closest COVID testing site is: CVS, 1650 Farwell Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53202, 1.6 miles. Please be sure to confirm that the site is still offering testing before visiting.
  • Attendees are requested to test within 24 hours before they depart home for the event so they can stay home if they test positive. ABA will reimburse registration fees in these instances.
  • Frequent hand washing and/or sanitizing is strongly recommended. ABA will have hand sanitizer available at the event, while supplies last. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own hand sanitizer as well.
  • If an attendee tests positive during the event, ABA asks that they refrain from attending the remainder of the event.
  • If an attendee is notified during the event that a close contact has tested positive, they are encouraged to test and engage in CDC-recommended protocols.

So much has changed in the age of COVID and we will continue to evaluate these policies going forward. Please understand we are doing the best we can and there are many factors to consider. We appreciate everyone helping us prioritize both Safety and Kindness. 

Failure to abide by our Health & Safety policies will result in removal from this event and you will be banned from attending any future ABA conference.



ABA strives to make all of our events a safer place. We offer support and we always enforce our Code of Conduct.