Article from Virginian Pilot, VA on 5/6/2006
by JOHN HOPKINS, The Virginian-Pilot
Submitted by BlindNews Mailing List
[BlindNews: News About Blindness]
I am concerned about the specific mention of blindness as a critical factor in this lawsuit. If the proper safety gear was not used, fine, there may be a good case. But blindness, in and of itself, is no reason to award damages. Doing so would send the incorrect and improper message that it is unsafe to allow blind people to scate! It might encourage undue discrimination against the blind.
This is really unfortunate. I can speak from experience that *anyone* can get hurt skating. If you don’t wear padding, you’re putting yourself at risk. It was probably negligent on the part of the instructor not to give her a lesson in using protection, but I’d say that whether the person is sighted or blind.
As a kid, I had a few situations where people wanted to deny me access on the basis of my visual impairment and what they thought I could and couldn’t do. This lawsuit will reinforce that behavior.