Disney Tweaking Disability Access Procedures
Disney is again updating its program for accommodating guests with disabilities at its theme parks.
Starting Thursday, the Disability Access Service Card is going digital at Walt Disney World in Florida. Rather than write down return times for rides and other attractions on a card, cast members will scan visitors’ tickets or MagicBands, the company said.
The change will allow the disability accommodation to be integrated with My Disney Experience, a website and app for park visitors.
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The switch to an electronic process will not alter procedures for guests utilizing the Disability Access Service Card, however. Disney said visitors with disabilities will still need to visit each attraction in order to obtain a return time based on current wait times.
Disneyland previously adopted a digital approach to the Disability Access Service Card in November.
Changes in recent years to Disney’s accommodations for people with disabilities have been highly controversial. In 2013, the company did away with its Guest Assistance Card which often let individuals with special needs and those they were traveling with skip to the front of long lines for theme park rides.
Instead, the Disability Access Service Card now allows people with disabilities to obtain a return time for one attraction at a time.
Dozen of families sued Disney alleging that the current policy violates the Americans with Disabilities Act and does not adequately address the needs of their children with autism and other developmental disabilities. The suit is currently pending before the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida.
Most recently, the Florida Commission on Human Relations found reason to believe that Disney discriminated against theme park visitors with developmental disabilities after changing its access policy.
Disney officials have repeatedly insisted that their policies and practices for accommodating those with disabilities are in full compliance with the law.