Here is what I think the process is. Every time the senior and disability community raises legal and disability rights objections to the JFK closure that get broad support throughout the City, the pro-closure forces mobilize to either trumpet the disability access improvements they will be making, or suggest we negotiate a compromise.
Regarding all access improvements, the operative verb here is “will be.” They aren’t making them now. They don’t even have the funding to do so yet. Meanwhile, many of us are still shut out of the park, and everyone who needs to use a car or other motor vehicle has a terrible time either reaching the park, or going around or through it.
Regarding a proposed compromise, when has any legally protected group ever given up their civil and legal rights in the name of compromise?
Cities, like citizens, must comply with the law. Compromise is a completely different process. This garage compromise move is nothing more than a diversionary tactic. The garage is out of compliance with Title III of the ADA, period, full stop. Making the legally required improvements to the garage is NOT a concession in the name of compromise.
Furthermore, upgrading the garage to meet legal standards will not address a vast number of barriers to access to the public facilities and programs located along the eastern part of JFK Drive that didn’t exist before, but have been created by the road closure.
Categories: letter to the editor