River* loves to read. He regularly visits his local multi-level bookstore to purchase the books that he wants. The escalator is the only way for the public to access all the floors of the bookstore.
River has cerebral palsy and he is unable to use the store escalators without someone’s assistance.
River wants to be independent and asked the store to use the goods lift which is for staff and the movement of books to all levels. On all occasions this request was denied. The bookstore made other suggestions, such as the staff could bring books to River. This was quite upsetting for him. River stated that he does not want to be treated differently, he doesn’t want to stand out and feel humiliated as staff bring him books to look at.
River and his mother lodged a complaint of disability discrimination with ADNSW.
The bookstore team said they could not allow River to use the goods lift due to the WHS issues surrounding its use by a customer. After negotiation, the bookstore agreed to allow River to use the goods lift. They implemented a new process for staff to accompany River to the lift when he needs to move around the store. The complaint was resolved.
*Name has been changed to protect the identity of the individual.
19 Aug 2021
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