January 27, 2008

Steak & Shake: Where ADA Compliance has Been Taken Off the Menu!

Americans with disabilities spend more than $13.6 billion annually on travel. The Open Doors Organization calculated that in 2003, persons with disabilities or reduced mobility spent 35 billion dollars in restaurants. According to the same study, more than 75% of these people eat out at restaurants at least once a week. But Karen at A Deaf Mom Shares Her World tells a story that gives these mind-numbing numbers some texture and reality.

Can it really that be that hard to spend our money? Maybe the misguided narratives about "plucky" super-crips "overcoming" their disabilities and achieving heroic feats that inspire TABs (look it up) have some validity. Buying a milkshake and completing the transaction with dignity intact rates high on the heroic achievement scale in this story of an encounter with Steak 'n Shake -- but her equanimity to the bile evident in the public comments about her post is where Karen's true strength of character is revealed. Insult added to injury:

So I told him about the Americans with Disabilities Act and I explained that taking orders through the window is an accommodation that I need because I can't use the speaker to place an order.

He kept insisting that orders need to be taken at the speaker. "If you had just let me know at the speaker that you needed accommodations then I could take your order through the window."

"But I'm DEAF! I can't hear on the speaker! When I drove up, the first thing that I told you was that I couldn't order back there because I can't hear through the speaker."

Read about her descent down Alice's Rabbit Hole here at Steak and Shake Denies Service

Posted by rollingrains at January 27, 2008 10:16 PM