Posted in ADA Title II, Disabled parking places

A Senseless Tragedy in Tampa Bay

Photo by Skitterphoto on

When a person has unresolved inner rage, it’s easy for them to find some person or  “cause” upon which to unleash their fury. That’s what happened in Tampa Bay last week, when a man confronted a woman who had  parked in an accessible parking place without a permit.

The attached news story gives the details: the woman’s boyfriend returned to the car, saw the man yelling at his girlfriend, and pushed the man to the ground. Upon being pushed, the man pulled out his gun and shot the other man to death.

The District Attorney is apparently not going to press charges against the shooter, because of Florida’s ”stand your ground” law.

My purpose is not to challenge the use of that law in this situation, although I think a case could be easily be made that the law does not apply. I just want to reiterate the obvious:  no cause, not even the integrity of the Americans with Disabilites Act, could ever justify this result.

And it is a stark reminder for all of us (especially those who, like myself, have occasionally confronted people whom I believed were unlawfully parked in those spaces) to be cognizant of how quickly a conversation can lead to unspeakable tragedy.

We’re better than this.






Posted in Accessibility for people with disabilities, Air carrier access act

Nothing “Fake” in this News Story about Service Animals


We have recently been inundated with news stories about peacocks, turkeys and other assorted creatures, who are joining or attempting to join us on airline flights.

Not surpringly, this has occasionally resulted in conflicts between humans v. animals, animals v. animals and humans v. humans. Although these instances are relativly rare, the negative publicity casts a shadow on people with disabilities who genuinely need those animals in order to access airplanes.

It doesn‘t help that there is also tremendous misinformation out there about what the law actually says. That’s why it was refreshing to come across an article by the Washington Post that explains the issues in a very clear and easy-to-read style.

One of the most important points made is the following:

Although the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) limits the definition of  “service animals“  to dogs and miniature horses, this is not true with the airline industry, which is covered by a different law – The Airline Carrier Aviation Act (ACAA).  Under that law, airlines are required  to allow certain other animals on board.  This is because unlike the ADA, the ACAA covers what are called “emotional support animals,“  animals that are not there to perform specific tasks, but whose job is to generally ease anxiety and provide a degree of security to their handlers.

Without these animals, some passengers with disabilities may not be able to access airplanes. And since accessibility is the heart and soul of all disability laws,  it must be fiercely protected.

The US Department of Transportation has recently issued proposed rules to add more restrictions on animals aboard airlines. In a subsequent post, I will discuss what I consider to be the pros and cons of these rules. In the meantime, I have provided links both to these rules and to the Washington Post article.

Posted in disability civil rights

Celebrate and Defend the Americans with Disabilities Act


On July 27, 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) became law. We are now celebrating it’s 28th anniversary.

The ADA is the reason we expect to see ramps and curb cuts, as well as close-captioning and braile.

Please celebrate and be mindful of the disability civil rights movement and how it ultimately led to this revolutionary law. As indicated in the press and in other articles in this site, it is now under attack as never before.

https://a-data .org/ada-anniversary