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Thread: Not accessible store/business: make a lawsuit and get paid $500

  1. #11
    Member gigio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NikkiMaya View Post
    Wow! I was at that Abilities Expo in the New York Metro area. I wish I had seen that particular booth. I was there for two days, but ran out of steam towards the end. There's so much to do that even if I had had three days, I am not sure I could have seen everything.

    Sherocks, Gigio, and anyone else who has done these suits, thank you so much! I really can't tell you how much it means.

    Do any of you happen to have the name of a lawyer or firm in Southern Maine that brings these suits or a website that might provide that information? Getting paid is not important to me. I am just constantly outraged by accessibility issues and 2012 is going to be the year that I do something! Any help would be much appreciated!

    The most serious, life-altering problems I have had in the past with accessibility, involved workplace issues. The nonprofit I interned for in Washington DC was completely inaccessible, located in a four-story brownstone that had a full flight of stairs out front. I was using crutches at the time, so I forced myself to walk up three flights each day to make it to my desk. My next job, which was as a sexual assault victim advocate, was actually fairly accessible, with appropriate parking and on the first level of the building. However, the bathroom wasn't up to code, and there were no electronic doors. I worked almost entirely from home on a hotline and making hospital calls for forensic work, so it wasn't really a problem. Another internship I held simultaneously with my job as an advocate, had accessible parking, but the building had a crumbling ramp that led to an impossibly heavy door. My office was on the first floor, but was very difficult to move around inside, but did have an accessible bathroom.

    I now realize that all of the places I worked for or interned for, while nonprofits, received large federal grants. I believe this means that they have to bring their buildings up to ADA code. I wish I had known that when I was still working. It is really tough to try to get a job or internship and at the same time mention something like, "well you're not in compliance with the ADA, so I'm going to bring a complaint against you so that I can actually work here." How does that work? I know that you can bring a complaint with the Access Board. It seems like by the time you made a complaint and it was processed, and the building was brought up to code, you would have had to find a job or internship somewhere else. It sucks. This would definitely not deter me from making a complaint in the future, though.

    I can see that this particular thread is about suits that pertain to businesses, not workplaces, and that is definitely something that I am interested in learning more about and involving myself in. Again, more information on lawyers bringing these suits in the Southern Maine area is appreciated. Thanks!
    I've ask but they can't do Maine, but they might inform me about a colleague shortly.
    -----------------------------------------
    My new life started about five years ago.
    C4-5 incomplete

  2. #12
    Wow I could get pretty rich around here. I know whatyou mean about the internships and jobs... I always wondered what the expected a person in a wheelchair to do if she needed to go to the place here for battered women. It has a huge flight of stairs.
    If you can't handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don't deserve me at my best.


    Sometimes it is easier to widen doors than it is to open minds.

  3. #13
    Senior Member NikkiMaya's Avatar
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    Addiesue, re: the battered women's shelter, exactly! I think it is unconscionable! These places wouldn't turn away a victim who was black or lesbian or Jewish, for example, but somehow it is okay to discriminate via accessibility against people with disabilities.

    The safe house at the internship I worked at on human trafficking issues, was completely inaccessibly as well. So if they needed to provide emergency housing to a person with a disability, the solution was a separate location, completely isolated from the rest of the group and the agency's services. This is the typical response if an agency can't get out of providing services. It is not okay, because it is segregating a person for something that is no fault of their own, and it makes me sick. I'll stop ranting, but it just makes me especially angry when agencies that are about victims services and similar issues, do this to people. They are supposed to be compassionate, and they know better.
    In our world constituted of differences of all kinds, it is not the disabled, but society at large that needs special education...to become a genuine society for all. -Frederic Major, Former UNESCO Director General

  4. #14
    Senior Member ~Lin's Avatar
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    When I was homeless I was turned away by shelters due to my service dog. I'm pretty sure thats illegal but its not as if I was in a position to do anything about it at the time.
    Board Member of Assistance Dog Advocacy Project working in Education. Feel free to ask me any service dog questions!

    I am not paralyzed. I have a genetic connective tissue disorder with neuro complications and a movement disorder.

  5. #15
    Member gigio's Avatar
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    As I have many that write me directly to my email, please remind that the law firm that I know can operate only in NY, NJ and PA.
    For all other states I have no idea. Sorry
    -----------------------------------------
    My new life started about five years ago.
    C4-5 incomplete

  6. #16
    Member gigio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NikkiMaya View Post
    Wow! I was at that Abilities Expo in the New York Metro area. I wish I had seen that particular booth. I was there for two days, but ran out of steam towards the end. There's so much to do that even if I had had three days, I am not sure I could have seen everything.

    Sherocks, Gigio, and anyone else who has done these suits, thank you so much! I really can't tell you how much it means.

    Do any of you happen to have the name of a lawyer or firm in Southern Maine that brings these suits or a website that might provide that information? Getting paid is not important to me. I am just constantly outraged by accessibility issues and 2012 is going to be the year that I do something! Any help would be much appreciated!

    The most serious, life-altering problems I have had in the past with accessibility, involved workplace issues. The nonprofit I interned for in Washington DC was completely inaccessible, located in a four-story brownstone that had a full flight of stairs out front. I was using crutches at the time, so I forced myself to walk up three flights each day to make it to my desk. My next job, which was as a sexual assault victim advocate, was actually fairly accessible, with appropriate parking and on the first level of the building. However, the bathroom wasn't up to code, and there were no electronic doors. I worked almost entirely from home on a hotline and making hospital calls for forensic work, so it wasn't really a problem. Another internship I held simultaneously with my job as an advocate, had accessible parking, but the building had a crumbling ramp that led to an impossibly heavy door. My office was on the first floor, but was very difficult to move around inside, but did have an accessible bathroom.

    I now realize that all of the places I worked for or interned for, while nonprofits, received large federal grants. I believe this means that they have to bring their buildings up to ADA code. I wish I had known that when I was still working. It is really tough to try to get a job or internship and at the same time mention something like, "well you're not in compliance with the ADA, so I'm going to bring a complaint against you so that I can actually work here." How does that work? I know that you can bring a complaint with the Access Board. It seems like by the time you made a complaint and it was processed, and the building was brought up to code, you would have had to find a job or internship somewhere else. It sucks. This would definitely not deter me from making a complaint in the future, though.

    I can see that this particular thread is about suits that pertain to businesses, not workplaces, and that is definitely something that I am interested in learning more about and involving myself in. Again, more information on lawyers bringing these suits in the Southern Maine area is appreciated. Thanks!
    Nikki,
    Glad to inform you that they can help you. Check your private message.
    Ciao
    -----------------------------------------
    My new life started about five years ago.
    C4-5 incomplete

  7. #17
    How much do the lawyers make?

  8. #18
    Member gigio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaidMyDues View Post
    How much do the lawyers make?
    Don't know and don't care.
    I'm happy that they make the places accessible.
    -----------------------------------------
    My new life started about five years ago.
    C4-5 incomplete

  9. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by gigio View Post
    Don't know and don't care.
    I'm happy that they make the places accessible.
    Some people do care. If these ambulance chasers who are making countless millions from these lawsuits are truly motivated by altruism for those with SCI, they ought to contribute a significant amount of their profits to Dr. Young's research efforts.

  10. #20
    Member gigio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaidMyDues View Post
    Some people do care. If these ambulance chasers who are making countless millions from these lawsuits are truly motivated by altruism for those with SCI, they ought to contribute a significant amount of their profits to Dr. Young's research efforts.
    I think they just make a living and I respect that.
    Anyway, you always have to sign the settlement because you are the petitioner, so you will see how much they make, and it wasn't millions so far....
    -----------------------------------------
    My new life started about five years ago.
    C4-5 incomplete

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