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Class Action Plaintiffs Allege Disney Parks and Resorts Discriminates Against Visually Impaired

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A federal judge Dolly Gee has certified a class action lawsuit against Disney Parks and Resorts on behalf of plaintiffs Cari Shields, Amber Boggs and Teresa Stockton who claimed Disney discriminated against visually impaired guests. The lawsuit against Disney and its many theme parks does not seek monetary rewards, but was broken down into ten different classes in order to identify ten different issues that would have to be accepted as widely viewed complaints against those who are visually impaired and toured Disney theme parks such as Disney‘s MGM Studios. The Court reviewed complaints made in order to justify the requirement that enough guests have had the same experiences as the plaintiffs.

The plaintiffs identified ten different classes as sources of issues for the legally blind named in the class action suit against Disney. The Court ultimately found five to withstand all the requirements to be able to more forward with.

The plaintiffs alleged there is lack of Braille, large-print or other alternative signs, menus, maps and theme park schedules to be found around various Disney resorts. The plaintiffs have further alleged that Disney cast members have refused to read menus to them.

Disney argued that its park had designated areas for service animals to defecate within the park, but the Court sided with the plaintiffs on the inability to locate area for service animals to defecate. One plaintiff recalled being told by a Disney cast member that she must take her service dog to the kennel located at the front of the park, while another guest noted that the spot designated for service animals was extremely remote.

The Courts agreed with the plaintiffs’ allegations that Disney Parks refuses to offer cast members to assist visually impaired guests inside the park, and that they must bring someone with them and pay full price of admission. Disney had argued that those assisting visually impaired should be paid medical personnel and not friends or family that would otherwise enjoy amenities of the theme parks.

The plaintiffs alleged discrimination against the visually impaired because some guests have been denied access to the handicap parade viewing areas, simply because they were not confined to wheelchairs.

The Court also agreed that Disney websites are incompatible with screen reading software that assists visually impaired. Flash on websites automatically renders screen reading software unusable as there was no alternative website compatible with those programs.

An Orlando injury lawyer can provide guidance if you have been injured or discriminated against while visiting one of the many theme parks in Florida.