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Superdome Not Super Accessible: Accessibility News Roundup, July 9, 2018

C.P. Hoffman 07/09/18

Welcome back to our Accessibility News Roundup, where we bring together the best recent stories from the web about accessibility.

First up, NPR’s Marketplace dedicated an entire episode of its weekend edition to exploring the economics of disability:

  • “Roughly one in five Americans has a disability. Those numbers increase with age and vary across race and gender. And every single one of those people is carving out an economic life. Marketplace is covering the economics of disability in an hourlong special. We can’t get to everything in this episode, so we’re focusing on some of the pillars of the economy: education, work and health care.” — Marketplace Weekend: The economics of disability

Housing is one major issue the Marketplace episode did not explore in depth where we’re seeing some legislative and administrative action:

  • “Assisted living communities cannot be considered ‘community-integrated housing’ for purposes of helping Louisiana comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act in serving people with serious mental illness, according to an agreement recently signed by the U.S. Justice Department and Louisiana Department of Health.” — McKnight’s Senior Living: Assisted living is not ‘community-integrated housing,’ Justice Department says
  • “A proposal to require video cameras in common areas of residential facilities for the disabled has stalled in Albany, with supporters saying it would uncover abuse and neglect and opponents raising privacy concerns. The bill requiring video cameras isn’t expected to get a vote before lawmakers adjourn for the year on Wednesday. Several agencies and groups providing care for the disabled oppose the idea, saying cameras would violate their clients’ privacy.” — The Charlotte Observer: Effort to require cameras in facilities for disabled stalls

On the legal front, we have recently seen a number of lawsuits and settlements involving government agencies and hospitals failing to provide interpreters for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing:

  • “Adventist La Grange Memorial and Adventist Hinsdale hospitals will provide qualified sign language interpreters to communicate effectively with deaf and hard-of-hearing patients as part of a settlement agreement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office. The agreement reached Monday, which both sides say was amicable, also requires the hospitals to provide mandatory training to their employees on how to address the needs of the deaf and hard-of-hearing.” —Chicago Tribune: Hinsdale and La Grange hospitals reach settlement over deaf man’s complaint he was not provided with interpreter
  • “Georgia isn’t doing enough to help deaf and partially deaf people communicate while they’re locked up and after they’re released, which can lead to longer incarceration and more returns to prison, according to a new version of a federal lawsuit filed Wednesday. The new complaint filed by the American Civil Liberties Union of Georgia accuses three state agencies of failing to provide deaf and partially deaf inmates, probationers and parolees with interpreters and other tools to communicate effectively. That violates the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act, the lawsuit says.” — Journal Times: Lawsuit: Georgia is denying equal access for deaf inmates
  • “A lawsuit filed in May accuses two law enforcement agencies, including the Jefferson County [Colorado] Sheriff’s Office and Jeffco Sheriff Jeff Shrader, of violating the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. Among other things, the civil suit alleges two women, Ruthie Jordan and Mary Patricia Graham-Kelly, both of whom are deaf, weren’t provided certified American Sign Language interpreters when they were arrested by Jeffco deputies and booked into the Jeffco jail.” — Columbine Courier: Complaint alleges JCSO, Shrader violated ADA

In other ADA lawsuit news:

  • “A New Orleans Saints superfan dealing with multiple sclerosis is suing the Mercedes-Benz Superdome for ‘knowingly violating’ the Americans with Disabilities Act. Shelby Bailey filed a lawsuit Thursday, saying Superdome management put him in what he calls some of the worst seating available for people with disabilities. Bailey has been a season ticket holder for over thirty years, according to his attorney.” — WWL-TV: Wheelchair-bound Saints fan sues Superdome over handicapped seating 
  • “Atlanta’s cracked and crumbling sidewalks have long hindered people with physical handicaps who are just trying to get around town. But as of June 11, three Atlanta wheelchair users have lodged a class action lawsuit against the city, claiming its walkway infrastructure isn’t in keeping with the Americans with Disabilities Act, a federal statute that protects differently abled people from discrimination.” — Curbed: Atlanta’s busted sidewalks prompt lawsuit from wheelchair users

Finally, service animals and emotional support animals continue to make the headlines:

  • “The [Rhode Island] General Assembly recently passed legislation introduced by Sen. James A. Seveney (D-Dist. 11, Portsmouth, Bristol, Tiverton) and Rep. Dennis M. Canario (D-Dist. 71, Portsmouth, Tiverton, Little Compton) that will prohibit homeless shelters from refusing people with service animals.” — Portsmouth Press: RI bill to allow service animals at homeless shelters
  • “Delta Air Lines is the latest to tighten its restrictions for on-flight support and therapy animals, limiting pets to one per customer and banning particular breeds, including pit bulls and similar dogs, from flights entirely. The changes come shortly after others, including American Airlines and United Airlines, announced their own updated animal guidelines after a dog died on a United Airlines flight after being stored in an overhead bin.” — Philly Voice: Delta bans ‘bull type’ dogs from flights, tightens support animal guidelines​​​​​​​

See anything cool in the news lately? Tweet us at @LevelAccessA11y!

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1 Comments

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