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By Vincent Martinelli,
It’s hard to believe that Congress passed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) over 30 years ago and still many public establishments are not in compliance. In my experience, many businesses are not handicapped accessible and are unable or sometimes unwilling to make reasonable accommodations. All new construction must comply fully with the ADA although, some still fail to follow the law.
Small towns like those in Allegany County are greatly lacking in terms of accessibility. Many places have a step at the entrance or even stairs inside that limit access. Other locations lack adequate handicapped parking or accessible doors. Some places have really narrow doors or inaccessible bathrooms, particularly for wheelchair users like myself.
Many people take accessibility for granted, if you want to go somewhere you just go. For me, going anywhere takes a lot of planning and numerous phone calls inquiring about accessibility. If you own a business or know someone that does, consider if your establishment is ADA compliant. It’s not about giving businesses a hard time.. It’s about inclusion.