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VICTORY FROM A HANDICAPPED "STATE OF AFFAIRS"!
The Theodore Galusha Story


 In 1995, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), responding to the demands of environmental groups, began barring the handicapped from using motorized vehicles on trails and roads in the state's Adirondack Forest Preserve and other state forests. New York's disabled citizens were outraged by the order because the DEC reneged on a compromise that would open dozens of roads to the disabled. Motor vehicles are the only means for many of the disabled to enjoy the parks.

After many handicapped had their permits revoked, they decided to file suit in federal district court charging the State of New York with violating the federal Americans with Disabilities Act, which guarantees the disabled equal access to public facilities.

DEC workers were still allowed to use the road while the disabled - and the general public - were barred.

On July 28 1998, a federal district judge issued a restraining order prohibiting enforcement of the discriminatory regulation.

Theodore Galusha, one of the plaintiffs in the suit, is thrilled with the decision. He suffers from multiple sclerosis and looks forward to once again being able to drive his all-terrain vehicle to his favorite nature spot. Another plaintiff, Teena Willard, who has been paralyzed for 20 years as a result of a car crash, says, "This is just awesome... that we have the right to go up these trails and woods."
Source: Property Rights Foundation

 

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