Frustrated by Relay Call Hang-ups? Please Fill Out Our Survey!

The Civil Rights Education and Enforcement Center (CREEC), the National Association of the Deaf (NAD), the Colorado Association of the Deaf (CAD), and the Colorado Cross-Disability Coalition (CCDC) are working together to investigate businesses that reject or hang up on relay calls. Please take our brief survey to help us learn more about your experiences with relay call hang-ups. Deaf and hard of hearing individuals often use relay services – IP, video, or TTY – to communicate with hearing people at businesses or organizations. However, certain businesses reject or hang up on phone calls that come to them via relay services. This action constitutes discrimination under the Americans with Disabilities Act, which requires public entities to provide and support effective communication. We want to learn which businesses are rejecting relay calls, which is where you come in. Please fill out our short survey to help identify the companies and organizations that do not accept phone calls from relay services. You can fill out the survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/NTJX2FT. Once we learn which businesses are doing this, we will attempt to teach them that the ADA requires them to accept relay calls just like customer calls made from voice lines. If that doesn’t work, we may bring a lawsuit to correct the violation. If you have any questions about the survey or our relay call investigation, please contact CREEC at 303-757-7901 (voice), 970-403-5294 (text/SMS), or...

Amicus Success in the Ninth Circuit

The Ninth Circuit decided yesterday that that you cannot moot a Title III case by keeping the challenged policy and making an exception only for the plaintiff. In Butler v. WinCo Foods, LLC, — Fed. App’x —, 2015 WL 3377837 (May 26, 2015), the plaintiff had challenged the defendant grocery store’s service animal policy. After the store offered the plaintiff an individual exception to the policy, the District Court dismissed the case as moot. In today’s decision, the Ninth Circuit reversed, holding that WinCo had not met its burden to show that it was “‘absolutely clear’ that it ‘could not reasonably be expected’ to revoke the exception or continue to enforce the allegedly improper policy against” the plaintiff. WinCo proffers the declaration of its manager, Steve Behn, who states that a memorandum is posted in the breakroom informing employees of the exception; that employees are being trained to grant Butler the exception; and that WinCo “has no intention of revoking the exception to the policy.” However, WinCo’s allegedly improper service animal policy remains in place, and WinCo maintains the position that the policy need not be changed. And, although WinCo employees are presently being trained to grant Butler an exception to the policy, it is not “absolutely clear” that such training cannot reasonably be expected to cease. Butler, slip op. at 3. Congratulations to Amy Vandeveld, the plaintiff’s attorney. CREEC wrote an amicus brief in support of Ms. Butler, which was joined by our friends at the American Association of People with Disabilities, The Disability Law & Advocacy Center of Tennessee, the Disability Rights Education And Defense Fund, Disability...

Welcome, Alison!

CREEC is excited to announce that Alison Haugen will be working with us this summer as part of the University of Denver Sturm College of Law Externship Program! Last semester, Alison participated in the Immigrants’ Rights Lab and spent a week providing legal services to detained immigrants at the family detention center in Dilley, TX. She also provided legal services to individuals at the GEO Aurora Facility throughout the spring semester. Alison is originally from Mankato, MN via Madison, WI where she double-majored in International Studies and Philosophy at the University of Wisconsin. She just completed her 2L year at DU and in the fall will start working towards a Master of Social Work to complete her dual degree program at DU. Outside the classroom, Alison can be found cruising around Denver on her bicycle, playing board games, and attending gaming conventions. Welcome, Alison! We’re excited to be working with you this...
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