RI Family Dollar Stores to Address ADA Compliance Issues
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Rhode Island
PROVIDENCE – Family Dollar Stores of Rhode Island, LLC has agreed to a Settlement Agreement with the United States, under which it is required to undertake steps to review, identify, and address accessibility issues inside and outside of all 29 stores located in Rhode Island to bring them into compliance with the American with Disabilities Act (ADA), announced United States Attorney Aaron L. Weisman.
The company will also pay a civil penalty to the United States.
This agreement follows an investigation by the United States Attorney’s Office under Title III of the ADA, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in the full and equal enjoyment of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations of any place of public accommodation. Although it is a private entity, Family Dollar Stores are places of “public accommodation” within the meaning of Title III of the ADA.
The United States’ investigation determined that Family Dollar stores in Rhode Island were not being maintained to ensure sufficient access for persons with disabilities, including access to accessible parking spaces, front entrances, and store aisles. The investigation was prompted by complaints to the United States Attorney’s office by persons with disabilities who use mobility aids, such as wheelchairs and walkers.
According to the Settlement Agreement, Family Dollar Stores of Rhode Island, which cooperated fully with the investigation, has agreed to ensure that its employees will not place merchandise, shopping carts, boxes, and/or any other items in areas of its facilities, including both inside and outside of its stores, where such placement reduces or eliminates accessibility; will hire or designate an employee to serve as an ADA Coordinator with sufficient training and authority to undertake meaningful efforts to ensure that all Family Dollar Stores are in compliance with the Agreement; and within 60 days all regional, district and store managers and employees will undergo complete training regarding Title III of the ADA.
Additionally, Family Dollar Stores of Rhode Island has agreed to pay the United States government a civil penalty of $7,500 and to remedy all violations within six months.
This matter was litigated by Assistant U.S. Attorney Amy R. Romero.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Rhode Island is committed to investigating alleged violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Those interested in learning more about architectural barriers to access under the Americans with Disabilities Act may access www.ada.gov, visit the web site of the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Rhode Island at www.justice.gov/usao-ri/civil-rights-enforcement, or call the Department of Justice’s toll-free information line at (800) 514-0301 or (800) 514-0383 (TTY). Information about filing a complaint, including instructions for filing a complaint online, can be found at www.ada.gov/filing_complaint.htm..
Updated September 24, 2019
Press Release Number: 19-123