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NV conservation group supports FERC's transmission planning rule; Memorial Day weekend includes Tornadoes and record-high temperatures; A focus on the Farm Bill for Latino Advocacy Week in D.C; and Southeast Alaska is heating homes with its rainfall.

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U.S. Supreme Court allows South Carolina gerrymander that dilutes Black voters, Sen. Ted Cruz refuses to say if he'll accept 2024 election results, and Trump calls Mar-a-Lago search an attempt to have him assassinated.

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Smokey Bear thought only "you" could prevent forest fires, but decomposing mushrooms may also help, a Native American community in Oregon is achieving healthcare sovereignty, and Colorado farmers hope fast-maturing, drought-tolerant seeds will better handle climate change.

Ruling: NYC Failed in Sandy Planning for 900,000 with Disabilities

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Friday, November 8, 2013   

NEW YORK – It's a long list of shortcomings.

A federal judge ruled Thursday that New York City failed in its Superstorm Sandy planning for people with disabilities.

Susan Dooha, executive director of the Center for Independence of the Disabled New York (CIDNY), applauded the ruling, which found the city guilty of benign neglect in failing to follow the Americans with Disabilities Act in its disaster planning for about 900,000 New Yorkers with disabilities.

"That they failed to provide for high-rise evacuation,” she said, “failed to provide accessible transportation, failed to provide accessible shelters, failed to canvass for people left behind in the storm."

Dooha added the list of failures extends to the recovery.

Judge Jesse Furman cited the city for failing to ensure that communications were accessible during recovery efforts and failed to provide real world information that people with disabilities could use to plan for the next emergency.

The Bloomberg administration has staunchly defended its disaster plans, both in court and in public, but the judge cited what he called a mountain of evidence that pointed to both successes and failures in plans for people with disabilities.

Dooha said her organization is counting on Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio's commitment to civil rights as a sign he will take a fresh approach.

"We hope that the new mayor of New York City will embrace this opportunity to make New York a safe place to live for all New Yorkers,” she said, “and come up with a responsible plan for ensuring that people with disabilities are safe in an emergency."

The mayor-elect had no immediate comment on the ruling.

The Center for Independence of the Disabled was one of the plaintiffs in the class-action case, which was represented by Disability Rights Advocates.

Dooha said the Center welcomes the U.S. Justice Department to join in the remedy phase to the ruling.




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