Mervynís Faces Disability Suit




Mervynís Faces Disability Suit

Retail chain Mervyn’s is in the midst of an ongoing suit brought about by Californians for Disability Rights.

This week the disability rights group was given permission to move forward with an appeal against Mervyn’s.

The Allegations

The suit was filed against Mervyn’s in 2001 and seeks to require the stores to widen their aisles so they are more accessible for wheelchairs and walkers.

According to the claim, the Hayward-based chain does not enable those with disabilities to shop in their stores because the aisles are only 32 inches wide.

The group is also accusing Mervyn’s of failing to provide adequate access for those with disabilities because it places its movable racks too close together.

Suit Makes Advances

In 2003, a Superior Court Judge in Alameda County ruled that if the 125 stores in California were to widen their aisles, they would face financial troubles.

However, the Californians for Disability Rights were determined and appealed the case, claiming that financial hardships do not qualify as a legal defense.

The state appeals court agreed with the group and they were told to proceed with their case.

Group Moves Forward with Appeal

"Now the Court of Appeals will finally get to hear the merits of the case. That's what we've been wanting since we filed our notice of appeal in late 2003,” commented Monique Olivier, the lawyer representing the group. A ruling is expected by next spring.

(Source: San Jose Mercury News)

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