ctupton Asked November 3, 2017

Need help with restrictions for handicapped husband in independent living complex.

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A handicapped person can live here if the spouse living here with them can care for them. We have been here a year. 110 apartments. We are age 70 but the average age here is over 80. Many people have the sit down style walkers and many have scooters. So far my husband is the only one with a motorized wheelchair. This morning I was told now he can't go on an elevator alone. I liked this place because it gave him so much freedom and he could easily socialize. Is there a law that covers this? I think it is an arbitrary restriction of his freedom. Two elderly people were in the elevator with my husband. His WC became stuck and no one could reach the button to open the door. Someone on another floor got the elevator and the door opened. Till then the 3 people were stuck. They are blaming my husband. I think the 2 other people should have stationed themselves next to the control buttons. But now I have to deal with the ultimatum about him always needing someone with him in the elevator Help. Thanks, christine

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SnoopyLove Nov 4, 2017
I think this may be contrary to the ADA, as well, and that you should politely push back against it. The incident with the other two people in the elevator sounds like a mishap, an accident -- not something that is likely to happen again if he has been moving around easily in the complex before, right? Maybe he could do some practice getting in and out of the various elevators in the complex to make sure he has a game plan about any potential problems and have a routine that he courteously advises fellow passengers about: "Excuse me, would you mind standing beside the buttons?" or something like that. Maybe he should also be in the habit of carrying a charged-up cellphone with him within easy reach when he's out and about, with various phone numbers all programmed just in case. (I've seen folks in power wheelchairs with a cellphone mounted by the controls.) Maybe advising management of the steps you both have taken to reduce the chances of another "elevator incident" might allay their fears? If not, then maybe seeing if a social worker at the complex, a local agency advocating for independent living for those with disabilities, etc., might be of assistance.
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MACinCT Nov 4, 2017
If it is not in the contract you may have a case. This ultimatum may also be contrary to Americans with disability act. It seems that the other residents are making a mistake. Your excuse can be that he IS with others in the elevator. Che k out adara.org
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