Councilman Claims His City Violated His Rights
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
June 5, 2006
RED BLUFF, CALIFORNIA--A member of the Red Bluff City Council has filed a discrimination suit against the city he serves.
Larry Stevens, who is legally blind and has Type II diabetes, filed suit in April claiming that the city violated the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act by failing to provide documents in a large enough type font; resisting his efforts to make City Hall, sidewalks and curbs accessible; and retaliating against him by having him removed from office when he complained a year ago.
Stevens has been a member of the council for the last six years. He served four months as mayor in 2005. But the council voted to remove him during an emergency meeting called by the city manager one day after he filed an ADA complaint -- a day that Stevens claimed the city manager knew he would be out of town.
The current city attorney, Rick Crabtree, told the Red Bluff Daily News that it would be illegal for the city to settle with Stevens as long as he is on the council. He added that the city has tried to reasonably accommodate Stevens for a long time.
Stevens, who plans to run for re-election this fall, disagreed.
"This is an ongoing situation for a number of years," Stevens said last week. "This is not just for me, but for the safety of other people with disabilities."
"Councilman files lawsuit" (Redding Record-Searchlight)
"Stevens says lawsuit won't affect re-election plans" (Red Bluff Daily News)