Checking up on Amtrak's (lack of) ADA compliance

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SubwayNut

Conductor
Joined
Nov 17, 2011
Messages
1,555
Location
South Bend
Amen, my friend. A few years back I broke an ankle badly, and ended up using a wheelchair for several months. I discovered that parts of the campus of my university--ostensibly fully accessible--were not accessible at all by someone in a wheelchair. And they didn't have an online map of the campus showing where accessible doors to each of the buildings were. I kept pestering the administration till they finally posted the map and changed several walkways to be more accessible. But I never would have noticed except for my personal experience of trying to navigate my way by wheelchair.

When I was in college 2007 to 2011, the college I went to was in the middle of a major capitol project mainly installing ramps, elevators, new accessible paths on the hilly portion of campus, to make campus fully accessible. It was part of a settlement with the justice department after they had been sued for dragging their feet on not making the campus accessible. I went to a reading with an alumnus who had gone to the college in the '80s who used a wheelchair from a permanent disability who had to have the same dorm room all 4 years, because it was the only accessible dorm room at the time on the entire campus.
 

neroden

Engineer
Joined
Feb 23, 2014
Messages
9,506
Location
Ithaca, NY
When I was in college 2007 to 2011, the college I went to was in the middle of a major capitol project mainly installing ramps, elevators, new accessible paths on the hilly portion of campus, to make campus fully accessible. It was part of a settlement with the justice department after they had been sued for dragging their feet on not making the campus accessible. I went to a reading with an alumnus who had gone to the college in the '80s who used a wheelchair from a permanent disability who had to have the same dorm room all 4 years, because it was the only accessible dorm room at the time on the entire campus.
My partner (who I met in college) has juvenile-onset rheumatoid arthritis, and I've always had problems with my feet, and we were trying to help out my frail grandmothers by the 1990s, so I've been highly alert to this stuff since college in the 1990s, though I was somewhat aware even in the 1980s.

It's one thing when places are trying; I know there's a *lot* to retrofit. It's something else when they're not trying. After this many years, I feel like I can tell the difference between (a) actively helpful, (b) trying but not competent, (c) negligent, and (d) malicious.

Amtrak is usually in category (b) these days, but was in category (c) prior to Boardman. NYC Subway is usually in category (d). Most administrators at my college were in category (c) but a few were in category (b) and some in category (a); I got to watch the internal politics a bit.
 
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