Monday, October 15, 2012

New ADA toolkit offers compliance tips for restaurateurs

In an effort to help restaurateurs better navigate the newly revised 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design, the National Restaurant Association's toolkit on compliance suggests application of the following steps:

1. Inspect the facility, including sidewalks, parking area, entrances, passageways, floor coverings restrooms and table/booth configurations, to determine whether architectural and communication barriers to individuals with disabilities exist.

2. Periodically review your facility to ensure that accessible elements are being maintained in an operable and accessible condition. For example, accessible routes and parking spaces must be kept in good repair and free of leaves, ice and snow.

3. Consider accessibility requirements when planning new construction, making alterations or engaging in simple repairs. Confirm that architects, contractors or other consultants you hire are familiar with both the ADA Standards and applicable state or local accessibility requirements.

4. Review the lease if your facility is leased to determine whether the landlord or the tenant has the responsibility for making alterations required by law. Consult an attorney if necessary.

5. Review and, if necessary, modify customer service policies to ensure they adequately reflect your obligations under Title III of the ADA.

6. Ensure staff receives job-appropriate training regarding your restaurant's obligations under Title III of the ADA

7. Increase the staff's sensitivity to people with disabilities. Ask local rehabilitation agencies for tips or help with training.
To receive a PDF copy of the National Restaurant Association's toolkit on ADA Compliance, please call the Louisiana Restaurant Association at (504) 454-2277.

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