In June of 2012, a federal court overturned a ruling which would have required New York to make its taxi fleet wheelchair accessible. Despite this development, New Yorkers with disabilities continue their long battle to challenge NYC’s segregated taxi system.
On April 4, 2013, Judge Daniels of the Southern District of New York District Court allowed Plaintiffs to supplement and amend their complaint to include challenges to the legality of the Taxi and Limousine Commission’s (TLC) selection of the Nissan NV200 van as the exclusive taxi vehicle of New York City for the next decade.
The current taxi system is 98.2% inaccessible and people who are non-disabled are 25 times more likely to get a taxi within ten minutes than is a person who uses a wheelchair. In addition, 80% of New York’s subway stations have no elevators and leave people with mobility disabilities unable to use these two essential forms of transit in NYC.
The lawsuit seeks to make NYC’s taxi fleet wheelchair accessible so that New Yorkers with disabilities will have an equal opportunity to get to work, school, medical appointments, and other essential life activities. DRA and Outten & Golden LLP represent the Plaintiffs: United Spinal Association, 504 Democratic Club, Taxis for All Campaign, Disabled In Action and two individuals, Christopher Noel and Simi Linton. Plaintiffs filed the lawsuit in January of 2011.