Disney Parks Are Making It Tougher For Disabled Guests to Visit

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disney guests in adaptive halloween costumes in front of sleeping beauty castle at disneyland resort

Credit: Disney

One thing The Walt Disney Company has always prided itself on in regard to its theme parks is accessibility — Guests who are pregnant, for example, can experience part of the epic thrill ride that is Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance before being escorted out of the attraction by a Cast Member and Disability Access Services (DAS) are simple to use for those who qualify.

Accessibility offerings for mobility disability needs
Credit: Disneyland Public Affairs

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Furthermore, Walt Disney designed his theme parks to be places where parents and children — no matter what physical challenges they may have — could enjoy time making memories together.

Now, however, it seems that Mr. Disney’s original theme park — Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California — might be making things a bit more challenging for certain Guests. Regular Park visitor and Instagrammer Gothic Rosie, who has previously shared that she suffers from a chronic illness, recently wrote:

Since I haven’t been going as much as I used to, I’ve missed things like this. A new railing blocking off what used to be a resting spot for me and I’m sure others.

@thesweepspot saw it about 3 weeks ago.

More of the less seating planning? Or just Fantasmic seating control?

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One commenter noted that it may be an accessibility issue for the return of Fantasmic, “Possibly an accessibility issue since it’s technically a walkway? When I was lined up for Fantasmic I did see a guest using the railing as walking in the queue.”

Rosie responded that after reading numerous comments regarding Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements, it is possible that this is why the railing was constructed but was still befuddled by how this would actually solve any issues:

ok after reading a bunch of comments in my FB post I see that it could very well be an ADA thing. Makes no sense to me but I use a walker and I avoid that walkway because of the ridiculous stones. But if you only use a cane I can see where a railing would help

Sleeping Beauty Castle
Credit: Disney

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Regardless of why the railing was put up, the problem of a lack of seating for those who need to rest throughout the day persists at Disneyland Resort’s two theme parks — Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park — and other Disney properties around the world.

Benches and other seating options have seemed more scarce since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March 2020.

Credit: ITM Rebekah B.

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As one Instagram commenter noted, the situation has become immensely frustrating, especially who visit the Parks on a frequent basis:

The seating issue has become unbearable. So their solution is….less seating? I guess if we’re sitting down, we aren’t spending money, so gotta get us and moving!

Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance
Credit: ITM/Alex Lue

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It is important to note that there is undoubtedly a reason for this railing, and it is quite possibly related to ADA regulations. This does not, though, lessen the frustration for those who see dwindling seating areas at their beloved Parks.

If you ever find yourself struggling to make it through a Disney Parks day, don’t hesitate to ask a Cast Member for assistance — they will help in any way they are able.

Disneyland Halloween Time
Credit: Disney

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The official Disneyland Resort website notes:

Disney Parks have an unwavering commitment to providing a welcoming, inclusive environment and accessible experiences for our Guests. As part of this commitment, the Disability Access Service (DAS) is a program offered at the Disneyland Resort theme parks to assist Guests who have difficulty tolerating extended waits in a conventional queue environment due to a disability.

Have you recently noticed issues for Guests with physical disabilities at Disneyland or Disney World?

Visit the official Disney World website to plan your next magical vacation to Walt Disney World Resort’s four theme parks — Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and Disney’s Hollywood Studios — and the Disney Springs shopping and dining district OR the official Disneyland website to plan your trip to Disneyland Resort’s two theme parks — Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park — and the Downtown Disney District!

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