In Minnesota over the last five years, there has been a surge in lawsuits around the state that target businesses for not meeting Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements. The Minnesota Council on Disability (MCD) has dedicated staff and resources to aid business owners in their efforts to meet ADA obligations. Thousands of dollars each year are spent on settling lawsuits when this money could be better spent on improving the accessibility of the built environment. Improving accessibility is also known as barrier removal. For example, when a step exists at the entrance to a store it is referred to as a barrier. When the step is removed or a ramp is installed the barrier has been removed. Creating disability parking where there was none before is also barrier removal. Disability parking is what most of the Minnesota lawsuits focus on.
MCD has been working to improve access for people with disabilities for over 40 years. The ADA and the State Building Code require certain levels of accessibility and barrier removal. Businesses are not always clear on what is required of them and this has led to a dramatic increase in lawsuits. MCD offers free training sessions on how to understand what is required of Minnesota businesses under the ADA and State Building Code. We also provide many different tools to assess buildings and determine what might need to be done to increase accessibility, avoid a lawsuit and benefit from tax incentives.
MCD has been working with local disability organizations, chambers of commerce and other business associations to raise awareness and prevent lawsuits. We would be happy to come to your area and provide you the resources to remove barriers. Remember, as our society ages there are increasing numbers of community members, travelers and patrons who will require increased levels of access to businesses. It makes good business sense to meet ADA obligations and remove barriers, MCD is here to help.
To learn more:
- Call: 651-361-7809
- Visit: Protect Your Business by Removing Barriers