Disney Revokes Policy for Disabled

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-15-2009
Disney Revokes Policy for Disabled
2
Mon, 09-23-2013 - 8:01pm

Disney Parks will be changing their policy that allowed disabled visitors to be moved to the front of the line because the policy was being abused.  According to an article on Yahoo Shine (http://shine.yahoo.com/parenting/disney-world-s-message-to-the-disabled--wait-in-line-161946185.html), wealthy moms have hired a disabled guide in order to get their kids on the rides faster.

Disney's new policy goes into effect on October 9th and will allow disabled visitors to be issued tickets that offer an entry time and a shorter wait, similar to those of the FastPass system that’s offered to all park guests now.

I didn't realize that the policy for disabled visitors was being abused!  What do you think of the change to the policy?

Community Leader
Registered: 06-28-2001
Sat, 10-12-2013 - 12:23am

Oh, Jen - so sorry to see that you have such a negative subject title to announce this important news.

As of Oct 9th, Disney will indeed discontinue their existing policy for those with disabilities; however, they are replacing that policy with one that they hope will help alleviate long lines for those with special needs and possibly deter abusers as well. It is sad that the media has put such a negative spin on this news when really, Disney is continuing to aid those with special needs and is trying to address the abuse that has been running rampant with the existing program.

The old Guest Assistance Card (GAC) was never a front-of-the-line pass - it was a means to help guests with disabilities and their party to avoid long waits. My cousin, a former NYC police sergeant, has severe back pain due to injuries sustained during her career. She cannot stand for great lengths of time. In the past, she has at times attained a GAC for her visit to DL and WDW. Wait times using GAC were varied, sometimes she was escorted onto the FastPass line, sometimes another entrance where she was allowed right on to the ride, and other times, she waited almost as long as the Stand By queue. It was rarely a "front-of-the-line" experience. Perhaps this was a direct result due to the abuse to the system - it's tough to put a disabled guest immediately on a ride when there are so many guests asking for the same request. There's bound to be a back-up. I think a Fast Pass type of system for those with special needs will help break up those crowds, by spacing them out a bit. And perhaps for those who abuse the system, it will deter them from even trying.

In reading Disney's policy (see link below), they are open to addressing guests' unique needs if this program does not work for them. I think that's amazing. Yet if you search the internet for information about this news story, you will read over and over one negatively worded title after another. However, despite all of this negativity, what I continue to read over and over from families or individuals with special needs is that the Disney parks have always gone above and beyond anywhere else to provide these families/individuals with a vacation experience like no other. In fact, many have said that if it weren't for Disney, they would not be able to vacation anywhere else.

 Here's more information from WDW's website and AllEars: http://disneyparks.disney.go.com/blog/disney-parks-disability-access-service-card-fact-sheet/

http://allears.net/pl/special.htm

 

Val, Co-CL Disney Vacations

Community Leader
Registered: 06-28-2001
Sat, 10-05-2013 - 8:34pm

Sorry - duplicate post

Val, Co-CL Disney Vacations