[nagdu] EXTERNAL: Reasonable Accommodation?

Jewel S. herekittykat2 at gmail.com
Wed Sep 8 02:40:59 UTC 2010

How about contacting corporate NFB about this? They have in the past
helped with cases that hve gone from bad to worse. Remember the
lawsuit with the baby being taken away from the parents because they
were blind?

I think this situation warrants investigation. If they are treating
you differently because you are blind and so they think they can take
advantage of you, that is a blindness-related discrimination. As you
are saying that injuries have been caused int he past, make sure you
make note of that. Injuries to your person or that of your service
dogs is *not* acceptable, but neither is not being able to exercise

I strongly and heartitly urge you to call NFB Corporate or at least
your State President. It is imperative that you do this, show them
that it is a problem, and tell them what you hvve told us, that they
are treating you badly because you are blind and insisting that the
only regression you can get is through GDB or the OCB. That's
absolutely and totally ridiculous! This sounds like a lawsuit, and a
pricey one (for the park manager and leasor)! This is no small claims
lawsuit at this point, but a full blow criminal discrimination
lawsuit. I implore you to take this to your state president or NFB
Corporate as soon as possible and gain their advice and support. this
is not a problem for one person and two service animals. This is a
case for an entire Federation!

Please do get help, and I wish you all the luck in the world.

On 9/7/10, Tamara Smith-Kinney <tamara.8024 at comcast.net> wrote:
> True about the land ownership.  However, the property owner (via the
> management company via the park manager) is responsible for maintaining the
> property they own according to certain safety standards.  Which they are not
> in the back yard.
> So we cannot use the back yard -- which we fenced off for the dogs according
> to the rules and all that, with proper approval and everything -- without
> risk of injury.  In fact, I have been getting micro-injuries on an almost
> daily basis.  I have gotten at least two major injuries that are running up
> my medical bills.  Again.  They should have done the work back there before
> we moved in to live up to their legal and contractual obligations, but they
> did not, so that's a problem.  There is also risk of physical injury to the
> dogs themselves, and that has happened, just nothing really serious yet.
> The front yard -- or side yard, I guess, to be more accurate -- is entirely
> different and is not unsafe for me or for Mitzi except that there is not a
> barrier between her and the street...  It's not a wild and crazy street, and
> her boundary training is solid and her increasing maturity is increasing her
> reliability.  I still have to remind her when she gets a yen to bound
> joyfully out of bounds, but she stops and comes back.  Whew.
> So the front/side yard is the option for me to meet my dog's need for
> exercise and my own need for exercise with the least potential to either of
> us.  I would prefer a fully fenced area for that, since she is then
> completely safe from being able to dash into the street at exactly the wrong
> time and get hit by some bozo speeding through without care for speed bumps,
> children or poodles.
> Since the owners of the property we rent have not lived up to their
> legal/contractual responsibilities, I need adjust of the rules so that I can
> live in my home on the property I rent -- making it effectively my own front
> yard -- because of their, well, lawbreaking, which has increased my medical
> expenses and threatens the career of my guide if she happens to break a leg.
> The life of Daisy, in fact, if she breaks her remaining front leg out there.
> Which is a problem, too, because she is not trained or socialized as Mitzi
> is to run and play elsewhere, except in the house.  I do make sure to play
> with her indoors as much as I can and get her running and having fun --
> which means loud barking for her! -- but there is a limit to what I can do
> outdoors with her.  I do keep working on her recall and "quiet" out there,
> but it is difficult because I can't walk around.  The bright side is that
> she has now worn a trail we can both use, although it is still iffy for me
> to walk to her to get her attention since I have to use my careful walk...
> And if I walk off the trail, then that hurts.
> Okay, I'm getting too analytical and going nuts with the details...
> Wondering why it suddenly feels like I'm going around in circles.  Again!
> /grin/
> The root of the problem is lack of enforcement of existing laws or codes or
> ordinances, a dysfunctional and clogged up legal system, a series of laws
> and codes and culture that have given huge power to a small group of now
> very wealthy landowners, who have further manipulated legislation and
> agencies in their favor and, well, over a period of several decades so there
> you have it.  Many people have suspicions about the judges and inspectors
> and so forth, based on results when one of the peasants does try to object
> to being taken advantage of, but honestly, there's no need for the
> landowners to bribe anybody these days.  Several of them do keep every
> property attorney in their jurisdiction on retainer so that even if a renter
> can afford an attorney, she/he can't hire one because it would create a
> conflict of interest.
> Thus, my need to resolve their irresponsibility and lack of compliance with
> the laws and codes by playing with my dog in the front yard not the back
> yard...
> No, it does not make sense.
> Tami Smith-Kinney
> -----Original Message-----
> From: nagdu-bounces at nfbnet.org [mailto:nagdu-bounces at nfbnet.org] On Behalf
> Of Pickrell, Rebecca M (TASC)
> Sent: Tuesday, September 07, 2010 8:50 AM
> To: NAGDU Mailing List,the National Association of Guide Dog Users
> Subject: Re: [nagdu] EXTERNAL: Reasonable Accommodation?
> Tami,
> Just read that you are in a trailer park. I know that isn't the PC term,
> but my understanding is that it isn't your front yard. It belongs to the
> manager and he/she can make whatever rules they want. The trailer is
> yours, the land is not. So yes, he's correct that Mitsy is off-leash
> even if it is right out in what you think of as your front yard.
> Again, I still fail to see why this is blindness related. And what is
> OCB? Who cares if you got "turned in"? What does that mean exactly?
> -----Original Message-----
> From: nagdu-bounces at nfbnet.org [mailto:nagdu-bounces at nfbnet.org] On
> Behalf Of Tamara Smith-Kinney
> Sent: Saturday, September 04, 2010 8:32 PM
> To: 'NAGDU Mailing List,the National Association of Guide Dog Users'
> Subject: EXTERNAL:[nagdu] Reasonable Accommodation?
> Er...  Is there a secret key to requesting reasonable accommodation
> under
> the FHA (we're talking a single rule in this case)?
> In other words, can I just write a quick letter saying I need to do X
> with
> my dog so I am requesting ye olde reasonable accommodation?  And that's
> that?
> Er...  Um...  What if the reason I need reasonable accommodation in this
> case is because the people I'm requesting it from have not met their
> legal
> and contractual responsbilities when it comes to the safety of the land
> we
> rent from them for the home we own...
> This is Oregon, BTW.  Dealing with it directly by, say, hiring an
> attorney
> and stuff like that is not, as near as anyone I know has ever
> discovered,
> will not happen.  Some of the people I know and have discussed such
> matters
> with are working feverishly to do something about Oregon landlord/tenant
> law
> while trying to provide advocacy for tenants, but the problem is so
> hopeless
> and so overwhelming that they just come out and tell you that the best
> they
> can do is to give you a list of numbers to call but that nobody at the
> other
> end of those numbers will do a dange thing.
> So...  We fenced off our backyard, after getting proper approval and
> such
> when we purchased the house, and they promised they would fix the back
> yard
> so it was safe to walk around on and ready for us to landscape.  This
> would
> required heavy equipment and the like but they would get it in and do it
> before we moved in.  Also, of course, they would get the trees removed,
> since they create a safety hazard for me especially and since we
> included
> the removal of those trees in our purchase contract.  We purchased the
> home
> from the landowners we rent the lot from.
> Anyway, a year and a half later, and I still cannot exercise with the
> dogs
> in the backyard.  So I need reasonable accommodation to do so with Mitzi
> in
> my front yard, which is safe for both of us, except for no fence between
> us
> and the street.  Side street, limited traffic, most of it slow, but
> still!
> Mitzi is off leash and boundary trained -- although she will still push
> the
> envelope a bit on the boundaries, then turn around and run back.  At the
> age
> of 4, she's got it down to 4 feet (hers, as opposed to one toe) over the
> line, and then hardly ever.  So it's our safest option to get the
> exercise
> we both need without having to risk death going to a dog park, since
> they
> are now belatedly upgrading the infrastructure out here to accommodate
> the
> population, so it's crazy out there.  /smile/
> Anyway, I'm feeling quite lost in it all because as far as the park
> manger
> (the one who is supposed to be getting the work done) is concerned, I am
> breaking a rule by playing with my dog in my own front yard, which he
> translates as letting her run loose around the entire park.  Er...  I
> did
> attempt to discuss the situation, and DD has done so as well, but they
> called the Oregon Commission for the Blind about it...  And I think GDB,
> too, though I can't remember for sure.  I thought I made it clear it had
> nothing to do with my blindness or Mitzi's work as a guide dog, beyond
> the
> added value of her training, which they are crazy to think I will
> endanger
> just willy nilly...
> There is also, apparently, an issue with Mitzi's being off-leash in the
> front yard because of Daisy.  Who has nothing to do with it and is
> *never*
> off leash anywhere except in the house, the back yard or the car.
> Nevertheless, last I heard, my playing/training/exercising my poodle in
> my
> own front yard is a terrible, terrible problem and danger because we
> can't
> have Daisy loose out there.
> I will remind you, I live in Oregon.  There is not a dang thing I can do
> or
> anyone to call or write on the state level who will do anything or even
> record the call or put my letter in a file ... Very much the same as
> with
> OCB.   Well, since I'm blind and my dog also happens to be a guide dog
> when
> she's working, I can get referred to the OCB or to GDB...  /lol/  Even
> when
> it's clearly not a blindness or guide dog related issue.  And even if it
> was, my dog is not from GDB, so...  I can't quite figure out how they
> come
> into it, except that they happen to be there and I happen to have a
> guide
> dog.  /lol/
> I've been asking around here and there to see if maybe some randome
> person
> will know something I don't that will make the way things are around
> here
> make sense...More than one such random human has suggested I call OCB
> and
> GDB, seeming quite assured that that will take care of everything...
> OCB is
> militant in protecting information relating to blindness or blindness
> issues, although a sighted person can't be expected to know that, I
> guess.
> As for GDB...  Have I been living this close to them all this time
> without
> ever catching on that they're actually Hogwarts?  /lol/  Even if I did
> call
> them about the issue, why would they possibley care?  Or why would they
> assume that I am not a crackpot myself, on the basis that I have called
> them
> out of the blue about an issue that has nothing to do with them or one
> of
> their dogs or anything, with the expectation that they will fix it?
> Now that I have attempted to ask the question and try to outline the
> situation, I am feeling like a crazy crackpot, so I guess I'll have my
> guide
> dog take me to the store and hope we live to tell the tale...  It's not
> the
> traffic on Farmington that's the problem, I have decided.  It's the
> people
> driving the traffic...  Also since there is nowhere to walk but the bike
> lane most of the way, and since drivers assume the bike lane is there
> for
> them to pass on...  Whaddaya do? /smile/
> Tami Smith-Kinney
> -----Original Message-----
> From: nagdu-bounces at nfbnet.org [mailto:nagdu-bounces at nfbnet.org] On
> Behalf
> Of Sherri
> Sent: Friday, September 03, 2010 7:12 PM
> To: NAGDU Mailing List,the National Association of Guide Dog Users
> Subject: Re: [nagdu] harness pouch
> Thank you. That's where mine came from too, however, it is worn out.
> Perhaps a harness pouch with the NFB logo and a picture of a dog or
> something like that would be a good item that NAGDU could sell for
> fund-raising as well.
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Charlene Ota" <caota at hawaii.rr.com>
> To: "'NAGDU Mailing List,the National Association of Guide Dog Users'"
> <nagdu at nfbnet.org>
> Sent: Friday, September 03, 2010 10:01 PM
> Subject: [nagdu] harness pouch
>> Sherri, just to let you know, I found out that the harness pouch that
> I
>> was
>> given is actually the sign that says something like "Don't pet working
>> dog"
>> and it was purchased from Guide Dogs Incorporated for $20. The sign is
> a
>> small pouch that fits over the harness with two straps. The pouch has
>> GDUI's
>> logo on it but I don't think the sign does and thsign is basically a
> small
>> pouch in itself and has room enough for pooh bags and maybe a foldable
>> water
>> bowl or things like that.
>> That's about all I know. I'm not sure where else to get harness pouchs
> or
>> signs like it.
>> _______________________________________________
>> nagdu mailing list
>> nagdu at nfbnet.org
>> http://www.nfbnet.org/mailman/listinfo/nagdu_nfbnet.org
>> To unsubscribe, change your list options or get your account info for
>> nagdu:
> http://www.nfbnet.org/mailman/options/nagdu_nfbnet.org/flmom2006%40gmail
> .com
> _______________________________________________
> nagdu mailing list
> nagdu at nfbnet.org
> http://www.nfbnet.org/mailman/listinfo/nagdu_nfbnet.org
> To unsubscribe, change your list options or get your account info for
> nagdu:
> http://www.nfbnet.org/mailman/options/nagdu_nfbnet.org/tamara.8024%40com
> cast
> .net
> _______________________________________________
> nagdu mailing list
> nagdu at nfbnet.org
> http://www.nfbnet.org/mailman/listinfo/nagdu_nfbnet.org
> To unsubscribe, change your list options or get your account info for
> nagdu:
> http://www.nfbnet.org/mailman/options/nagdu_nfbnet.org/rebecca.pickrell%
> 40ngc.com
> _______________________________________________
> nagdu mailing list
> nagdu at nfbnet.org
> http://www.nfbnet.org/mailman/listinfo/nagdu_nfbnet.org
> To unsubscribe, change your list options or get your account info for nagdu:
> http://www.nfbnet.org/mailman/options/nagdu_nfbnet.org/tamara.8024%40comcast
> .net
> _______________________________________________
> nagdu mailing list
> nagdu at nfbnet.org
> http://www.nfbnet.org/mailman/listinfo/nagdu_nfbnet.org
> To unsubscribe, change your list options or get your account info for nagdu:
> http://www.nfbnet.org/mailman/options/nagdu_nfbnet.org/herekittykat2%40gmail.com

Check out my blog about accessibility for the blind!
Treasure Chest for the Blind: http://blindtreasurechest.blogspot.com

More information about the NAGDU mailing list