Utah Advocacy Group Sues Retail Stores And Developers For Access Problems
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
October 21, 2002
SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH--Last Thursday, the Disabled Rights Action Committee (DRAC) filed a federal lawsuit against 40 tenants of The Gateway retail and residential development for allegedly violating the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Those tenants include national chain stores such as Barnes & Noble and Galyan's and local stores such as Cummings Studio Chocolates and Copper Rivet.
The suit claims that aisles, bathroom stalls and dressing rooms in the businesses are too narrow, and that sales counters are too high for wheelchair users.
DRAC has also filed a federal lawsuit against Boyer and Cowboy Partners L.C., the developer of The Parc condominiums at Gateway, for failure to comply with the federal Fair Housing Act.
"When I see a step into a business, it says to me, keep out," said disability rights advocate Barbara Toomer. "When I have to pay for my purchases and I have to sign things off of my lap, or people hand me a board to use, it says we don't want your business."
A representative of the developer called DRAC "irresponsible" and said that it "discredits all the other good disabled rights groups."