Tuesday, May 24, 2011
Taxi of Tomorrow may be illegal
From the NY Times:
The United States attorney’s office in Manhattan has opened an investigation into whether the lack of wheelchair-accessible taxicabs in New York City amounts to a violation of parts of the Americans With Disabilities Act.
The investigation, revealed on Monday in letters mailed to city lawyers and owners of taxi medallions, could result in the federal government’s bringing a civil case against the Taxi and Limousine Commission, which regulates which vehicles can be used as taxicabs.
Taxicab owners are not required by the city to operate vehicles that are accessible to the disabled. The Nissan NV200, the minivan chosen by the city as its exclusive yellow cab for the next decade, will not provide access either.
Federal lawyers are conducting “a thorough evaluation” of whether this complies with the disabilities act, which prohibits local governments, or private groups that provide public transportation services, from discriminating against the disabled, according to the letter sent to medallion owners.