Unprecedented dual class actions challenge NYC subway’s discrimination against wheelchair users

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Disability Rights Advocates

Two class action lawsuits were filed today against the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), accusing it of systematically excluding people with disabilities. One suit, filed in New York state court, is the first case to ever challenge the fact that over 350 of New York City’s subway stations are unusable by people who can’t traverse stairs, making it the least accessible subway system in the nation. This affects hundreds of thousands of New York City residents and visitors such as those using wheelchairs, with arthritis, or having certain heart or lung conditions. It alleges that the MTA’s failure to install elevators in stations throughout the city is in flagrant violation of the New York City Human Rights Law. The second suit, filed in federal court, accuses the MTA of not maintaining the few elevators that do exist, leading to frequent breakdowns.

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