Feds Follow Up On Judge's Concerns Over Court Access
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
April 10, 2006
EASTPOINTE, MICHIGAN--The Macomb Daily reported last week that an assistant U.S. Attorney was joined by several Eastpointe city and court officials while inspecting the town's district court building for accessibility.
The group reportedly toured the 38th District Court building on March 14, investigating a complaint from one judge who claimed that the facility, which was built in 1996, violates the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act.
Court administrator Lori Shemka said earlier that the county jail had an inmate who uses a wheelchair and needed to come to the court building for a hearing.
"Our rear door doesn't have a wheelchair ramp so right there, the facility is not ADA accessible," Shemka said. "We're going to have to be creative in how we treat this individual with dignity as he comes here."
Shemka would not give any details of what the investigators found.
If the town fails to comply with the federal anti-discrimination law, it could face fines of up to $55,000 for the first violation and $110,000 for additional ones.
Two years ago, in the case of Tennessee v. Lane, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that individuals could sue states for failing to provide access to the courts.
"Feds check out court for compliance with ADA rules" (Macomb Daily)
"High Court Upholds Access To State Courts: State of Tennessee v. Lane et al" (Inclusion Daily Express Archives)