ADA Settlement Agreement Entered Between U.S. Attorney's Office and Two Local Restaurants
Kenyen R. Brown, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Alabama, announces the resolution of complaints against two local restaurants made by persons with disabilities who could not access the facilities. The United States Attorney’s Office recently entered into Settlement Agreements under the Americans with Disabilities Act with the owners and operators of Islanders Restaurant and Bar in Dauphin Island, Alabama, and Gambino’s Italian Grill in Fairhope, Alabama.
The United States Attorney’s Office, through its Civil Rights Enforcement Unit, opened its investigations in these matters after receiving complaints that people with mobility disabilities were unable to access the restaurants.
As a result of the settlements, Islanders Restaurant – which is elevated on stilts - has installed a lift to allow persons with mobility disabilities to enter the restaurant, added accessible parking and added an accessible unisex bathroom.
Gambino’s now has a new, unisex accessible bathroom and accessible parking. Accessible routes have been provided throughout the restaurant, including to the Bayview Dining Room and the courtyard. Accessible tables have been installed in the bar and courtyard.
The owners and operators also adopted policies which require providing dining assistance to persons who are deaf, hard of hearing, blind and deaf-blind, blind, and people with mobility disabilities. Service dog policies were adopted. Staff training is also required by the Settlement Agreements.
Mr. Brown states: “When notified of the federal investigation, the owners of Islander’s and Gambino’s chose to work collaboratively with our office to remedy the ADA violations by removing the barriers which prevented persons with disabilities from enjoying their restaurants. Not only is this required by law, but it’s also great for business. We commend these restauranteurs for their decisions and their wise investment. They have shown they are good corporate neighbors. With more than 55 million persons with disabilities in our country, the restaurants have the potential for much more business as well.”
These matters were handled for the United States Attorney’s Office by Assistant United States Attorney Holly L. Wiseman.
For more information, visit www.ada.gov or our office’s website at http://www.justice.gov/usao/als/civil/cre.html.” Any person with a disability who believes they have been discriminated against in the Southern District of Alabama may contact our office at 63 South Royal Street, Suite 600, Mobile, AL 36602, telephone us at 251.441.5845 or file a complaint with the U. S. Department of Justice, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Civil Rights Division, Disability Rights Section, Washington, DC 20530.