Comments for Disney in Plain English – Disney World Goes to Court Over Disability Access Policy

Magic Kingdom

Credit: Disney

37 Comments

  1. Bonnie

    Since Disney seems to own Florida the chances of A.L. actually winning this law suite are pretty slim. If they try to take it to a higher court they will have less chance of winning since FL government will promise Disney anything they want. The company with the most money (tax money) wins, so good luck. I hope you get to be heard. It’s a noble request but Disney takes no advice or suggestions from anyone.

    1. Noelle

      to say Disney takes no advice of suggestions from anyone is 100% flat out false. Their empire was built on the wants and needs of the public. Asking for a guarantee that every autistic person visiting the park stay on their own schedule and don’t experience delays and wait times is absolutely LUDICROUS on its face !

    2. Linda Gonzalez

      You’re right. That’s what we’re up against
      My daughter has autism and has suffered greatly since Disney changed their disability access. After reading all the insensitive comments lacking empathy from the public about this awful problem, i realize we’re also up against an ignorant unsympathetic public who has no idea what it’s like to wait on a two hour disney line with someone with autism.

      1. Amber

        Nah – there are plenty of us that do get it.

        I have 3 kids – the oldest has autism and attends a school for special needs children.

        The requests of those in this lawsuit are small minded and short sighted. We do not get to change the park flow or experience for other guests for our own benefit simply because we have kids with autism (which was happening). And stop – you DO NOT have to wait in a 2 hour line. You are able to book 3 FP and use the DAS additionally. It may not be the same, but it’s far from forcing these kids into impossible and lengthy lines throughout the day.

        The reason people are unsympathetic is because of the self righteousness parents with kids on the spectrum can exhibit – like the people in this lawsuit.

        1. Donald Task

          I see no reason why after already being catered too that some feel it’s okay to SUE Disney into compliance. I don’t the ADA says “If you’re autistic you get to skip lines at completely voluntary attendance at Amusement Parks.” What a crock.

  2. Noelle

    The reason for the lawsuit is that part of having autism is that they need a routine and kids with autism can’t stand delays and departures from their schedules. I’m going to state the obvious here, but there is NO WAY that Disney can guarantee every autistic person keep on their own schedule, and that perhaps Disney is not for them ! There is no way to win everyone’s favor EVER. Soooo ridiculous !

    1. Harley

      Its not just austism theres others like my kid whom has extreme ocd and its the same extreme routine etc. But i disagree wdw shouldnt win and should do more! Hello they did have a pass when i wrked that was alternate entrance aka front of line or enter by exit but bc people took advantage of the old guest assist we now have a issue!!
      We all have to suffer and wait but thats also part of life yes and going to the parks but this pass wrked and started when paper fp was still aroubd and fp was limited now the fp line is longer than the regular and thats when its unfair! Also guest assist as long as the line was below 30 mins could just go into fp and now they got rid of that too! Also the cms are look down upon you like here comes another one vs caring to help! No offense its like there are more people out there w ailments that dont have make a wish and need help!

      1. Eva

        As a person with a rare disorder aggravated by standing, something I rarely exploit but absolutely must have an answer for if I’m to visit Disneyland ever, I would be very disappointed if Disney gives in to this lawsuit. It was completely abused for a long time by fraudulent injuries. The line to get in at these other exits was becoming nearly AS LONG as the wait to get on the ride. I was standing for up to an hour in the ‘cut the line’ line. Now, I return as stated on my pass, having waited the same length of time, and I don’t have to wait in a very long line at all to board. If anything, the return time allows for a more structured and well planned day with shorter lines for those of us that need that – but still have waited on a bench or somewhere else that doesn’t cause excruciating pain.

    2. Connie Coleburn Burford

      Speaking as a mother of an autistic son, I would like to say that the first time I traveled to Disney with he and my daughter I knew nothing about the RAP (ride accessability pass) It was only after we had been in the line for over an hour standing next to another family, while my son screamed, wiggled, went up and down from my arms, tried to escape the line, threw himself on the ground, banged his head on my legs, the wall, the ground, the person behind us and just about anything he could possibly do to the point that I was about to abort the ride line and break my daughter’s heart.
      The father standing next to me told me about the RAP and where to get it. The people standing around me in that line, because they were mostly adults with kids, were somewhat forgiving of my son’s actions. Some even offered to help. My daughter, who was five, stood there silently with tears rolling down her cheeks because she was afraid her day was going to be over at the park. Yes, I went and got that pass and we enjoyed our time there. The next time we went back the rules had been changed. It took me several years to save for us to go back and the way it was set up you sign in like the fast pass and get a wait time. Could be anywhere from an hour to three or even four hours. In the meantime you can wait in line for another ride, but then you’re in the same boat. We ended up leaving the park having only been on one ride.
      I have always been a huge fan of Disney, but I’m very disappointed in their actions in this case.

      1. Annoyed

        The obvious answer here is that you should not have taken your son to Disney. There are so many children now with disabilities and autism that is Disney cater to every one of them then the lines would be insane for everyone else. Why on Earth would you put your autistic son in that line and make your daughter live with that guilt for her to go on a ride? I have a kid with special needs, it’s my job to set them up for success, it’s not society’s job to bend around them completely.

  3. Blake

    FYI, Universal has the same exact policy.

    1. Jackie

      And theres a reason theres such hate over there about it! Go during hhn season where they wont give you anything and tell you to wait when you cant or worse the member of your party just shouldnt be here if they cant wait! Like why is my parent whose wc bound and needs assistance not go to an event they enjoy bc you can not do your obligated job and help em??? We never go to universal anymore and i saw the gal next to me get cursed out and told shes stupid bc her son shouldnt be at the event bc hes a child to begin w! And they didnt help her either!

      1. Jay

        Sorry but I agree with children absolutely not being allowed at Halloween Horror Nights. It is SPECIFICALLY a 17 years old and up event(like a rated R movie) yet parents have the audacity to wine and complain that the event is too terrifying for their child… Those people should absolutely never ever go to that event!!! It is most definitely people like that who will ruin the way the event is meant to be enjoyed for everyone. It is a HORROR themed event and parents have no right whatsoever to act like they don’t understand that

  4. Heather

    These policies go beyond autism. If you have a visual impairment, you might as well have the plague. There are few to zero accommodations for those individuals.

  5. Hilary

    My friend just came back from Disney World with his 2 autistic kids and raved about the current system! It let them plan their day, keep routines and not wait in long lines.

  6. Jenn

    I’m with Noelle. I get the schedule thing, a close friend has 2 autistic kids. The entitlement of America (and my constant frustration) is this-we think “I should get what I want ALWAYS.” As Noelle wrote, theme parks might not be the place for them. They aren’t for people on tight incomes or a variety of other life circumstances. Theme parks aren’t a guaranteed constitutional right, they’re luxuries. But not in America apparently.

  7. Pat

    The idea that persons with disabilities had “front of line” access is plain wrong. Under the old system, guests with disabilities had immediate access to fast pass line (unlimited fast passes) or the wheelchair accessible line. Both are shorter, yes, but definitely not a case of “no waiting”. Current disability pass functions as an “extra” fast pass (not “unlimited”. You can only have ONE disability access return time open at a time. If I go to a ride with a long wait time and am given a return time in two hours, I cannot use the disability pass again within those two hours. It works ok for some, but not others. Additionally, some individuals may have a problem with leaving the ride without going on when the go to get return time. That could be alleviated by allowing guests to reserve disability access return times through kiosks it the app, like other fast passes.

    1. Jackie

      Yes by no means did we not wait though there was also a limit to waiting bc fp had limits when it was paper now fp is as bad as the regular line and for many of us its not that we can not wait like everyone else our conditions limit us! I see many kids whom can not stand even waiting in fp and give up! And these are regular guests! Harley above mentioned something not only was there a limit but under 30 mins gac/das was aloud through fp now they do not allow that bc of how long fp lines get! Thats kinda unfair to us and you could see the pt… though i wish there was no fp bc when there was only assisted/wc lines and regular lines everything ran smoothly why no line stopped unless something went wrong w a ride! To me its all fp fault! Bc lets face it half these rides wouldnt hrs long if there was no fp!

    2. Dawn

      You can go to the kiosks instead of the rides. They have the kiosks throughout the parks, you just have to specify when getting the DAS that you would prefer to receive the wait times at the kiosks instead of the rides.

  8. Laura

    there’s no difference between waiting in a physical line and using the card with a return time. either way someone is going to have their schedule interrupted, so that argument doesn’t stand up. this way is most fair for everyone. if they want to sue someone, go find the people who were abusing the system and hiring people to get to the fronts of lines and sue them. oh, but they don’t have disney’s money.

  9. Matt Brewster

    I think the case should be dismissed, for I know that such cheating abuse exists. Diz has every right to get tough. I used to see such cheating occur with rental wheelchairs, only to see families use them like shopping carts- carrying only bags of purchases, not children! Such cheaters deprive the people who really need these amenities. Good for Diz to resist these cheaters!

  10. Eva

    I don’t see this as ‘getting tough’. I think Disney is doing what they are supposed to do – the most good for the most people most of the time. They cannot cater to everyone. The parents of children, or families of adults with disabilities, have to take on the rest of the burden. It is an amusement park for everyone. The lines for those unable to stand in regular lines was becoming as long as the regular line. The abuse was obvious and rampant. I love this system. I use it for my own physical limitation, and I absolutely love it.

  11. Josh

    I feel like they should be required to provide accommodations to those with these types of needs, but excessive preferential treatment seems a bit much. With someone in my family with these types of needs who was granted a trip to disney through make a wish, the current system makes sense. You can still establish a plan and follow it throughout the day.

    If you cant plan accordingly with 3 fast passes PLUS the ability to ask for a return time to any ride on top of the fast passes, that sounds like a planning problem. This gives you a significant advantage over anyone else attending the park, and in my opinion, an appropriate advantage. This suit seems to seek exponential special treatment, which like disney has said, is far too easy to take advantage of as what is the cutoff for needing immediate access to every ride? They legally cant ask for anything about medical conditions so anyone who’s asks for it is generally given it. The current method where you show up to a ride, receive a return time, and are able to come back at that time and go straight to the front of the line seems more than generous considering, as mentioned before, this is in addition to fast passes.

    If you need a routine, you simply plan that in to the day along with the 3 fast passes. For example, schedule fast pass at 9, 11 and 1, then request return times before getting on any fast pass ride, so when you finish your designated fast pass you can return to the ride you requested the return time for, then repeat. For example, you request return time for a ride, then go use your first fast pass, then go to the ride you requested a return time for to go on that ride, then request a return time on another ride, then use 2nd fast pass, and repeat. This seems fair and I am content with this. Using this, you could easily plan to get on 8-10+ popular rides in a day in addition to less popular rides where you can request a return time, use the restroom and come back to go straight to the front of the line. If you need to go on more than 10 popular rides in a single day on top of other attractions, I’d start to question the individual’s special needs vs someone’s special demands.

  12. Kim

    I agree with the system Disney has in place for handicapped individuals and I do not see how it violates the disabilities act. If there is someone in your family with a severe handicapp, physical or mental, I would hope you could contact Disney prior to your trip to make arrangements for fast passes. A doctors statement may be required to determine eligibility. There may have to be other rules and guidelines in place that were different from before.

  13. Brandi jeffers

    Thanks for the informative article the only thing I can add is that instead of saying “cut” the line I think a more accurate description of the situation is that the disabled person gets to “wait outside of the formal line.” They will still wait the same amount of time they just won’t do it in a formal line. I don’t really think that’s the same thing as cutting and I don’t think that’s what you were trying to infer but it almost sounds that way. Very informative article thank you.

    1. Jennifer

      Sorry but the word is simply, infer is what you did.

  14. Linda Gonzalez

    Ive been reading public comments about Disney’s abuse of our people with autism. Most people are insensitive and really dont care if a child with autism has a meltdown because they’re forced to wait in a crowd of people for two hours. Their comments range from well then don’t go to Disney or then we’ll have to have lines for every disability. My comment is what goes around comes around and I pray that something happens to opem their eyes up to their selfishness

  15. Eric Johnson

    I have a child with ASD and I believe the current system is a good compromise between special access and fairness to other guests. I understand routine is important, but I do not think the current system prohibits this. You can still plan your day fairly well.

    I read in another article about this case that their child would get very adjitated when they went to get a DAS and could not immediately get on the ride (and had to explain that they needed to come back). Some children with disabilities cannot process this and would get upset. But you do not need to be with your child to get a DAS. Anyone in your party can get it. This is how we handle it so we to not get ourselves in this problem.

    I think Disney is doing the right thing here.

  16. Mark

    We all can not be make a wish disney to say we have a disability and uour cms should see that as well! I just learned my daughter is disabled its rough enough to deal w learning wo having to cope w rude cms whom do not care to help unless your make a wish or are in wc! This is really sad and very recent bc when i was a manager it wasnt like this and i agree w jackie early whom stated its fp fault we wouldnt be waiting this long ANY OF US! If not for fp… unless it was busy or major attraction half these rides never saw lines thar exceeded 30 mins! I have a video from my vacation its Easter mansion had 10 mins never see that now! Why fps!

  17. sheena

    My son has Autism & we are grateful for the passes, I just wish they has a different place to sign up for them! In 2018 we went i did set up the 3 fast passes but did not get one for slinky dog dash, my sons obsess with toys story so he was very excited so when we had to go up to where we would be getting in line to get on the ride to have our pass signed for that return time that was the BIG PROBLEM he freaked out thinking we were not getting on the ride crying say slinky dog mama this broke my heart he almost non verbal but this meant so much to him he even tried to set on the ground i had to tell him over and over we will come back he was so upset we had to sit with him crying for most of the time till our return time, this is my problem with the passes not anything else if there was people working in the park in certain areas that could set up return times and not have to go to the ride and come back that would work so much better for my son!

  18. Donald Task

    Expecting to be able to just walk on to any ride with no wait is ridiculous.

  19. Common Sense

    This frivolous case is a complete joke and a perfect example of the disgraceful sense of entitlement some individuals possess. The case should be immediately tossed and if our legal system had any sense of sanity would require the plaintiff to pay Disney’s legal defense costs.

    1. Jackie

      Its not entitlement its called dealing with someone whom is sick or injuried or has needs you do not know what we go through!!! Your the entitled one who things we need a life!! Maybe you should use your “common sense” think for a min and have compassion! We are all human and are different and in those have needs others do not and can never understand!

  20. Jay

    Instead of demanding a vacation destination change for YOU, how about realizing you seriously need to consider new permanent vacation spots that will accommodate you??? No offense, but it seems like you WANT all the stress and drama instead of realizing how to keep yourselves away from it??? Higher consciousness and awareness please…

  21. Hope

    Aututstic people aren’t the only ones that can’t stand in a long line. There are others that have disorders that make it uncomfortable in the lines where people are. I have PTSD, Anxiety and Bipolar. I have been harrassed by the cast members in city hall, and at the rides because you can’t see my disabilities. At city hall, I even had one idiot try to map out my whole day with fastpasses. Another time I was taken to a separate room where I was accused of making up my disorders. Disney changes their Disability policy at the drop of a hat.

  22. Laura

    Having a son in a wheelchair I understand the whole disability thing. However, we go to Disneyland twice a year because my son LOVES everything Disney. So many people took advantage of the old disability pass and I’m glad they changed it. It was ridiculous. My son can’t wait in line for a long time because of toileting issues, and the new disability pass is awesome. We always have 2 passes going at once and rarely have to wait. We do wait at times and that’s okay on occasion. I truly believe Disney does their best and tries to accommodate everyone without having too many take advantage.

    1. Kay

      Disney Corporate can and should do more. Spending big $ to fly, stay on property, and eat, play and shop all at WDW, they can up their game. I have multiple disabilities and no, a wheelchair won’t make everything “all better”. I’ve been dissatisfied for awhile now about the experience now compared to the overall experience just 10 years ago. Double the price, add a few million more people and more “partner hotels” so those staying on property pay for more and get less, whatever. If people cheated the old system, that’s on them. They’ll reap what they sow. Btw, I’ve never used the Dissbility system because I didn’t even know it existed for years since I wasn’t familiar with certain services. It would’ve been nice to know, but at the time, I just used extra magic hours when they actually meant something! The current system gives me a fast pass that I would still have to wait for- hence my problem. I can only spend a short time at the park, certain rides I can’t ride and factoring in Disney transportation times, well I can’t hang with healthy people. I look healthy, but I’m not. So even if this wasn’t about those with autism, they are falling short in helping those with disabilities.

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