Gowen Rhoades WInograd & Silva PLLC Blog

Information and insight on today's hot legal topics.

Gowen Rhoades WInograd & Silva PLLC Blog - Information and insight on today's hot legal topics.

Annual Disability Law Symposium Highlights Accomplishments, Notes Hurdles

tenbroek photo

Dr. Jacobus tenBroek, the symposium's namesake.

On April 19 and 20, the National Federation of the Blind held its fifth annual tenBroek Disability Law Syposium. This yearly event began as a one day affair with less than 50 participants. With a stellar reputation in the disability legal community, the syposium now is nearly two days long, has dozens of attendees, and draws keynote speakers from the upper levels of government, such as former U.S. Senator Chris Dodd and Assistant U.S. Attorney General for Civil Rights Thomas Perez.

This year the Gowen Group was proud to have Bill Phelan, partner in charge of the firm’s disability law practice, speak at the event.

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Gowen Group Takes to the Catwalk

Rachael Dean Photography logoYou may have noticed that the Gowen Group’s website looks a little more en vogue. Thanks to the professional services of Rachael Dean Photography, the attorneys partook in a photo shoot at their downtown DC office. In addition to some of the fantastic staff shots Rachael was able to grab, she provided some pictures of the DC area to give our website some local flair.

You can find the choice photos on our website, but check out the additional shots below.

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(Try to) Swim at Your Own Risk

The weather is getting warm and many Americans are beginning to plan their spring and summer vacations. For those Americans who have mobility impairments or use a wheelchair, the hotel or motel they choose plays a key role in where they end up staying. Even though we are decades removed from the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, there are still many hotels that are not accessible for those with physical disabilities.

One amenity offered by hotels that should soon always be accessible are swimming pools. Unfortunately, pressure from the hotel industry has delayed regulations issued by the Justice Department that would have required hotel operators to make their swimming pools accessible by installing lifts. For those with mobility impairments and the elderly, these lifts are key in making sure someone gets safely in and out of the pool and can enjoy the water like anyone else staying at the hotel.

Currently, due to this pressure from hotel lobbyists, the rules are now to go into effect on May 17, 2012 with the potential of having the compliance deadline extended even further to September 17, 2012. But that still doesn’t mean you or a family member should encounter an inaccessible hotel on your upcoming trip.

In addition to swimming pools, the attorneys of The Gowen Group are here to make sure these hotels and motels are accessible in the rooms, services, and goods they provide to you. Contact us today if you would like to talk to us further about making sure your upcoming vacation is an accessible one! In the meantime, we will keep watch for whether the regulations go into effect before or after vacation season.