Radio Law Talk Segment
Companies are being sued because their apps are not easily accessible for blind people.
ISSUES (Summarize both sides argument, both perspectives. You can use bullet points):
- Plaintiff: they cannot use their tools with some of the apps that read to them what it says on the screen. This is due to programing errors. In today’s world, trying to get by without the internet/ apps is just as bad as not being able to fit through a door way to a store. They both restrict you from purchasing from that store, or benefiting from their services.
- Defendants: we want to accommodate everyone. Every person is a paying customer, we would not intentionally restrict someone from being able to access our content.
- General: does an app fall under the ada? Or is it just the physical stores?
THE ADA: the United States Code Annotated, Title 42, chapter 126 (42 USCA 126) section 12181 https://www.ada.gov/pubs/adastatute08.htm
-section 12182 (b)(1)(A)(i)- It shall be discriminatory to afford an individual or class of individuals, on the basis of a disability or disabilities of such individual or class, directly, or through contractual, licensing, or other arrangements with the opportunity to participate in or benefit from a good, service, facility, privilege, advantage, or accommodation that is not equal to that afforded to other individuals.
DETAILED FACTS (tell the story):
Plaintiffs have been suing big companies that have/ use apps for their business because they are not able to use the app because they are blind. One of the plaintiffs, Sandy Murillo, 29, lost her vision when she was 18 months old. Today, she co-hosts a radio show and works as a financial development assistant at the non-profit Chicago Lighthouse. Murillo said website compliance to the ADA is not just good business, it’s “the right thing to do.” “Not having access to the internet is like not having ramps or Braille in physical facilities. That’s today’s access issue,” said Murillo.
McDonald’s, Kmart, Grubhub and Empire have recently settled. The agreements are not available. There have been other law suits against other companies, some currently pending, such as: TGI Fridays, Kraft, Red Lobster, Sizzler and the corporate parent of Chili’s.
People with visual impairments browse websites and mobile apps using screen reading software that reads text aloud. JAWS (Jobs Access With Speech) is a popular program for Microsoft Windows. Voice Over is a built-in screen reader that supports refreshable braille displays for Apple products.
According to the complaint against Grubhub, the plaintiffs found perusing menus difficult and encountered “multiple unlabeled or mislabeled buttons and links.” Screen reader users also could not “select a restaurant through the headings because they are not labeled as clickable or accessible.”
OTHER FACTS (interesting facts, related facts, trivia, etc.):
- In 2008 target got sued because a blind person could not navigate their website. https://www.overlawyered.com/2006/02/target-sued-website-not-accessible-to-blind/
- McDonalds value is around 159 billion
- Grubhub value almost 5 billion
ARTICLE LINKS (so we can print them out):