Companies are Losing Web Cases: Spend Money on Web Access, not Lawyers

In less than two months, four different federal judges have said “Yes” to website accessibility. These cases, from Florida and New York, are a wake-up call to every business in the United States that serves the public: If you have a website, make it accessible so everyone can use it, including disabled people. Every business has a budget; every business watches how money is spent. These cases are but the most recent in a long-string of wake-up calls with a simple message: Spend your hard-earned dollars on accessibility, not on lawyers to fight it. Read more…

Blind People Cook: A Web Accessibility Story

Another day, another hit piece against law suits about website accessibility. Typically these articles are best ignored. But a recent piece in the New York Post demands attention. I’ve asked web accessibility leader and home cook extraordinaire Lucy Greco to join me in responding to the article, titled “Lawyers cash in on suits demanding ADA-compliant websites.” You’ll find out below why Lucy’s cooking skills are as relevant to this piece as her web expertise. Read more…

Lawyers as Changemakers: The Global Integrative Law Movement

The New York Times ran a powerful obituary on July 26, 2017 about Scharlette Holdman, an unsung woman who devoted her life to inmates on death row. The obituary described those who sought to emulate Holdman’s career by saying “Many mitigation specialists who followed in her footsteps are journalists and social workers. ‘It’s the antithesis of being a lawyer; it’s all about human feeling and connection..'” Is that true? Is human feeling and connection the “antithesis” — the opposite — of being a lawyer? Read more…

First Cousins: Structured Negotiation and Collaborative Law

The article posted here by Lainey Feingold first appeared in the July 2017 issue of Just Resolution E-News, a publication of the Dispute Resolution Section of the American Ban Association. It tells of the significant similarities between Structured Negotiation and Collaborative Law, two dispute resolution methods focused on cost-effective problem solving without litigation. Structured Negotiation:… Read more…

Rejected by the Los Angeles Times

On June 23, 2017, the Los Angeles Times published an op-ed titled “Is your company’s website accessible to the disabled? You’d better hope so.” The piece was mean spirited and full of inaccuracies about web accessibility. I took the piece’s alternative facts personally because the author wrongly claimed that Bank of America, Charles Schwab, and Safeway had been sued for web accessibility. I knew better — my clients, co-counsel and I had worked with each of these companies in Structured Negotiation. Joseph O’Connor and I tried to submit a response to the Los Angeles Times, but our efforts were rejected. Read more…

Web Accessibility for Grocers: Winn-Dixie Wasn’t Paying Attention

Last month the Winn-Dixie grocery chain lost the very first trial under the Americans with Disabilities Act about the accessibility of a private company’s website. A blind shopper had sued the chain when he couldn’t access online coupons and other parts of the company’s website. The judge’s verdict was big news; unlike most accessibility stories it was covered in the mainstream media. But web accessibility for grocery stores is nothing new. If Winn-Dixie had been paying attention, it would have known over three years ago that grocery chains were making their websites accessible. Winn-Dixie should not have waited for the legal knock on the door. When it came, it should not have put up a fight. Read more…

ATMs are 50 Years Old; They’ve Been Talking for 20

This month marks the 50th anniversary of the first Automated Teller Machine. The first ATM in the world was installed at a Barclays Bank branch in London on June 27, 1967. The first ATM in the United States was installed two years later at a Chemical Bank branch in Long island, New York. For 30 years ATMs remained off-limits to blind people, who couldn’t use the interactive, visual screens. It was not until October of 1997 that the world was introduced to the very first Talking ATM. It all happened because of disability community advocacy. And it’s a good reminder that today, 50 years after that first ATM, all technology should be born accessible. Read more…

Washington, DC Structured Negotiation Book Event on March 29

On Wednesday, March 29, The American Bar Association will host a book talk in Washington, DC for Structured Negotiation, A Winning Alternative to Lawsuits. Author Lainey Feingold, and Structured Negotiation’s co-creator Linda Dardarian will be on hand to share stories from the book and answer questions about the dispute resolution process that has delivered big results without lawsuits for two decades. Light refreshments will be served and Lainey will be signing books. Read more…