SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT

BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

AND CASTLES N’ COASTERS, INC.

UNDER TITLE III

OF THE AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT, DJ# 202-8-202

 


 

A.Background

Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (the “ADA”) requires that a place of public accommodation, like Castles N’ Coasters, ensure that no individual with a disability is discriminated against on the basis of a disability in the full and equal enjoyment of its goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations. 42 U.S.C. §§ 12182-12183, 28 C.F.R. Part 36.

Castles N’ Coasters is an amusement park located in Phoenix, Arizona. The park features four outdoor 18-hole miniature golf courses, several roller coasters rides, and an indoor video game arcade room. Other attractions include go-cart tracks, bumper boats and cars and a log flume. The park is open daily, year round. On September 10, 2009, the Department of Justice, Disability Rights Section received a complaint alleging that Castles N’ Coasters singled out the Brain Injury Survivor and Care-Giver Support Group of Glendale, Arizona, by requesting that their members sign release forms in order to participate in a planned, future miniature golf outing. The Disability Rights Section investigated this matter pursuant to its authority under the ADA. Castles N’ Coasters cooperated with the investigation and has agreed to take the steps below to ensure that guests with disabilities are provided equal access to the park without the imposition of eligibility criteria that screen out or tend to screen out an individuals with disabilities in accordance with 42 U.S.C. § 12182(b)(2)(A)(i).

In addition, Title III of the ADA requires that Castles N’ Coasters remove barriers to access where it is readily achievable to do so. 42 U.S.C. §§ 12182(b)(2)(A)(iv), 28 C.F.R.§ 36.304, and Appendix A (ADA Standards for Accessible Design, or “the Standards.”) Based upon an accessibility review of limited scope, this Section identified two items that are were not in compliance with the ADA, and which Castles ‘N Coasters has agreed to remedy pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 12182(b)(2)(A)(iv).

B. Remedial Actions to be taken by Castles N’ Coasters:

  1. Castles N’ Coasters will ensure that no individual with a disability is discriminated against on the basis of disability in the full and equal enjoyment of its services and facilities. 42 U.S.C. §§ 12182 - 12183; 28 C.F.R. Pt. 36 and App. A. Specifically, Castles ‘N Coasters will not require its customers to execute releases or liability waivers in a manner that singles out, or that tends to single out, individuals on the basis of disability.
  2. Castles N’ Coasters will continue to remove barriers to access throughout the park where such removal is readily achievable. 42 U.S.C. §§ 12182(b)(2)(A)(ii) and (iv), 28 C.F.R. § 36.304. Castles N’ Coasters agrees to remove the following barriers within 60 days of the execution of this Agreement:
    1. Inaccessible Entrance to Designated Accessible Restrooms: The door closer will be removed from the exterior restroom doors serving the accessible men’s and women’s restrooms, and whenever the park is open the exterior restroom doors serving the accessible restrooms will be placed in a secure open position. See 28 C.F.R. § 36, Appendix A, §§ 4.13.6.
    2. Inaccessible ramp: Castles N’ Coasters will provide handrails in compliance with the ADA, including 28 C.F.R. § 36, Appendix A, § 4.8.5, to ensure, among other things, that continuous handrails, handrails on both sides of the ramp, and handrail extensions (required when handrails are not continuous), comply with the Standards.
  3. Castles N’ Coasters advised the United States that it intends to remodel the park’s primary entrance. Castles and Coasters will ensure that this and any other alterations to its facility are to the maximum extent feasible, readily accessible to, and usable by individuals with disabilities. 42 U.S.C. § 12183(a)(2), 28 C.F.R. §§ 36.402 - 36.406.
  4. Within 30 days of the effective date of this Agreement, Castles N’ Coasters agrees to conduct employee training as to the requirements of the ADA and of this Agreement. Such training will include accommodating guests with disabilities, and appropriate use of releases and liability waivers.
  5. Castles N’ Coasters will pay $1000 in compensatory damages to the Brain Injury Survivor and Care-Giver Support Group of Glendale, Arizona within 15 days after it receives an executed copy of the Release of All Claims Form that is attached hereto as Exhibit 1.

C. Implementation

  1. In consideration for the Agreement set forth above, the United States will refrain from undertaking further investigation or from filing a civil action in this matter except as provided in paragraph 7 of this Agreement. While this Agreement resolves all issues between the parties, it does not constitute an admission by Castles N’ Coasters of any wrong doing or violation of the law. Neither this Agreement nor any provision thereof shall be construed as evidence of liability or wrong doing by anyone.
  2. The United States may review compliance with this Agreement at any time. If the United States finds that Castles N’ Coasters has failed to comply with any aspect of this Agreement, the United States agrees to notify Castles ‘N Coasters in writing of the alleged noncompliance and attempt to seek a resolution of the matter. If the parties are unable to reach a resolution within 30 days of the date of the United States’ written notification, the United States may seek enforcement of the terms of this Agreement in the United States District Court for the District of Arizona. Alternatively, should the parties be unable to reach a resolution within 30 days of the date of the United States’ written notification, the United States may bring an action to enforce compliance with the ADA and its implementing regulation.
  3. Nothing in this Agreement waives the right of the United States to bring a civil action to enforce this Agreement or any provision thereof.
  4. This Agreement constitutes the entire agreement between the parties relating to the Department’s investigation of this matter, and no other statement, promise, or agreement, either written or oral, made by any party, that is not contained in this written Agreement shall be enforceable. This Agreement does not purport to remedy any other potential violations of the ADA or any other federal law. This Agreement does not affect Castles ‘N Coasters’ continuing responsibility to comply with all aspects of the ADA.
  5. Failure by the United States to enforce this entire Agreement, or any provision thereof with regard to any deadline or any other provision herein, shall not be construed as a waiver of the United States’ right to enforce other deadlines and provisions of this Agreement.
  6. This Agreement shall be binding on Castles ‘N Coasters, its agents, its employees and any successors or assignees. In the event that Castles ‘N Coasters seeks to transfer or assign any facility owned by it as of the date of this Agreement and the successor or assignee intends to continue the same or similar use of the facility, as a condition of sale, Castles ‘N Coasters shall obtain the written accession of the successor or assignee to any obligations remaining under this Agreement for the remaining term of this Agreement.
  7. Copies of this document and any information contained in it may be made available to any person at any time.
  8. A signatory to this document in a representative capacity for either party represents that he or she is authorized to bind that party to this Agreement.
  9. This Agreement will be effective as of the date of the last signatory and shall remain in effect for a period of two years from the effective date.
For Castles N’ Coasters, Inc. For the United States of America:

 



THOMAS E. PEREZ
Assistant Attorney General

 

_________________________
GEORGE BRIMHALLL
Owner

 

Dated:             3/11/2010            

By: _______________________
JOHN L. WODATCH, Chief
PHILIP L. BREEN, Special Legal Counsel
ALLISON NICHOL, Deputy Chief
ALYSE BASS, Senior Trial Attorney
Disability Rights Section
Civil Rights Division
U. S. Department of Justice
P.O. Box 66738
Washington, D.C. 20035-6738
(202) 307-0663
(202) 307-1198 fax

 

Dated:             3/16/2010            

 

 

EXHIBIT 1
RELEASE OF ALL CLAIMS FORM

Castles ‘N Coasters
Department of Justice Complaint No. 202-8-202

For and in consideration of the $1,000.00 payment made by the Castles ‘N Coasters under the provisions of the Settlement Agreement entered into by, and between, the United States and the Castles ‘N Coasters, the Brain Injury Survivor and Care-Giver Support Group of Glendale, Arizona, hereby releases and forever discharges Castles ‘N Coasters, and its current, past, and future officials, employees, and agents, of and from any legal and equitable claims arising out of Department of Justice Complaint No. 202-8-202.

This Release constitutes the entire agreement between the Brain Injury Survivor and Care-Giver Support Group of Glendale, Arizona and the Castles ‘N Coasters without exception or exclusion. This Release will be considered null and void in the event that Castles ‘N Coasters fails to send a check for $1,000.00 within fifteen (15) days of receipt of this executed Release.

I am authorized to sign on behalf of the Brain Injury Survivor and Care-Giver Support Group of Glendale, Arizona and have read this Release and understand the contents thereof and I execute this Release of my own free act and deed. I also acknowledge that a copy of the Settlement Agreement has been made available to me.

 

Signed this ________ day of _______________________, 2010.

_______________________

 

Sworn and subscribed to before me this ______ day of ____________________________, 2010

_______________________
Notary Public

My commission expires: _______________

 





April 26, 2010