Greenwich Store Agrees to Comply with ADA and Permit Service Animals
John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that the U.S. Attorney’s Office has reached a settlement agreement with The UPS Store #1217 in the Riverside section of Greenwich (the “Riverside UPS Store”), to resolve allegations that the store was not operating in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (“ADA”).
The settlement agreement resolves an ADA complaint filed by an individual with disabilities alleging that the Riverside UPS Store required her to remove her service animal from the store as a condition of service. As a result of the settlement agreement, the store is in the process of posting signage indicating “Service Animals Welcome,” implementing a “Service Animal Policy,” which includes the types of legally permissible inquiries store employees may make of a customer who enters the store with a service animal, and training employees regarding the policy. Additionally, the Riverside UPS Store will compensate the complainant in the amount of $1,000.
Under federal law, private entities that own or operate places of “public accommodation,” including retail stores, are prohibited from discriminating on the basis of disability. The ADA authorizes the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate complaints and undertake periodic reviews of compliance of covered entities. The Justice Department is also authorized to commence a civil lawsuit in federal court in any case that involves a pattern or practice of discrimination or that raises issues of general public importance, and to seek injunctive relief, monetary damages and civil penalties.
U.S. Attorney Durham noted that the owner of the Riverside UPS Store has worked cooperatively with the U.S. Attorney’s Office to promptly address the ADA issues without litigation.
“The Americans with Disabilities Act ensures that individuals are able to access our state’s retail stores, service establishments and other places of public accommodation,” said U.S. Attorney Durham. “The U.S. Attorney’s Office is committed to enforcing the ADA, which requires businesses to appropriately serve the diverse populations of patrons who live, work and visit Connecticut. We appreciate the Riverside UPS Store’s commitment to increasing access to its store for individuals with disabilities who require service animal assistance.”
Any member of the public who wishes to file a complaint alleging that any place of public accommodation or public entity in Connecticut is not accessible to persons with disabilities may contact the U.S. Attorney’s Office at 203-821-3700.
Additional information about the ADA can be found at www.ada.gov, or by calling the Justice Department’s toll-free information line at (800) 514-0301 and (800) 514-0383 (TTY). More information about the Civil Rights Division and the laws it enforces is available at www.justice.gov/crt.
This matter was handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jessica H. Soufer of the District of Connecticut in coordination with the Disability Rights Section of the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division.