|Legal Resources For Those Having Access or Accomodation Problems
If you have a disability and are experiencing
access or accommodation problems, you can contact the following agencies
for further information and assistance:
- For accommodation concerns related to Atlantic County Government's
programs, activities or services contact Kathleen Quish, ADA Coordinator
at 609 645 7700 ext. 4519. (TTY uses NJ Relay 1 800 852 7899).
- US Department of Justice offers technical assistance on the
federal ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) Standards for Accessible
Design and other ADA provisions applying to businesses, non-profit
service agencies, and state and local government programs; it also
provides information on how to file ADA complaints.
ADA Information Line for publications, questions, and referrals
800-514-0301 (voice) 800-514-0383 (TTY). Internet address: www.ada.gov.
- The Northeast ADA & IT Center is located at Cornell University
in NY. This is our regional center that can answer a variety of
questions about the ADA and accessible information technology.
This center can be used by businesses, employers, people with disabilities
and advocacy organizations. Hotline 1-800-949-4232 (Voice/TTY)
or visit www.northeastada.org
- The NJ Barrier-Free Code and the NJ Barrier Free Sub-Code sets
out accessibility standards for walkways, parking lot spaces, ramps,
entrances, doors, corridors, stairs, floors, elevators, public
bath rooms, etc. The NJ Department of Community Affairs is the
enforcing agency for the state. Most municipalities have a designated
building code official to enforce the accessibility regulations
of these state laws. It is advisable to identify the municipality
in which the facility is located and contact the municipality's
building code official by telephoning the town's City Hall. You
can ask for information or register a complaint.
- The NJ Law Against Discrimination (LAD) is a state law that
provides a variety of protections to people at risk for discrimination
including people with disabilities. LAD prohibits unlawful discrimination
in places of public accommodation. These accommodations may include
actions such as providing auxiliary aids and making physical changes
to ensure paths of travel. There are five offices for the Division
on Civil Rights in NJ. One office is located in Atlantic City at
23 Pennsylvania Avenue, 3rd Floor, 609- 441-3100 (Voice) or 609-
441-7648 (TTY). http://www.state.nj.us/lps/dcr/
Accessible Parking in NJ
- To obtain an application for a permanent “handicapped” license plate or placard: Go to http://www.state.nj.us/mvc/Vehicle/HandicappedPlates.htm, call 1-888-486-3339 or visit your nearest MVC facility
- To obtain temporary “handicapped” placards, which are issued for short-term mobility impairment or medical conditions, are valid for six months and are issued by your municipal police department.
- Vehicles are prohibited from parking in “handicapped” spaces without special vehicle identification. Remember: “handicapped” parking permits and plates are to be used solely by the person with the qualifying disability, with punishable fines of at least $250.(C.39:4-197.(3)c) If someone who does not have a disability uses another person’s permit or plates, the Motor Vehicles Commission or issuing locality may revoke the permit of plates or deny renewal.
- Remember: Do not park in the striped access aisles next to spaces reserved for people with disabilities, even if you have permit or plates. The access aisles provide room for wheelchair users to transfer safely to and from their vehicles. Even parking a few inches over the lines may prevent someone from using their ramp or lift.
- NJ “handicapped” parking laws prohibit the issuance of penalties for overtime parking in one location for up to 24 hours, when the person to whom the issued placard or license plate is either the driver or passenger of the motor vehicles (C.39:4-207). When parking at a metered space, a driver with a placard or “handicapped” license plate must put the appropriate amount of money in the meter to the maximum amount. This will permit the vehicle to occupy the space for up to 24 hours, and no further payment will be required during that time. A municipality may require the vehicle to vacate the space after 24 hours.
- NJ “handicapped” parking laws authorizes eligible people with disabilities to request law enforcement officers to arrange for removal and storage of motor vehicles unlawfully parked in “handicapped” parking spaces or zones (C.39:4-207.7)
- Business are required to clear ice, snow, or any obstruction from a “handicapped” parking space and adjacent curb cuts within 24 hours after the weather condition causing the snow or ice ceases. New Jersey Parking Law (C.39:4-207.9) mandates fines from no less than $500 and no more than $1000 for violations.
- As a courtesy, if the person with a qualifying disability is driving or being transported by car and there are multiple handicapped spaces available, please use a space that does not have a Van Accessible sign posted. Whenever possible, these parking spaces should be left for persons who use a lift or ramp to exit their vehicle.
The information above is from the New Jersey Division of Disability Services' Guide to Handicapped Parking. For more information or to view the complete document please CLICK HERE to download. You can also visit the NJ Division of Disability Servcies website (www.state.nj.us/humanservices/dds/home/).
(Note: The term “handicapped” is used only in the context of parking and reflects the current language used in NJ law.)