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OpinionLetters

Letter: Many public places remain inaccessible

Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto/Bill_Vorasate

I applaud your story “Access remains a challenge for disabled” [News, May 27], a topic that has been ignored for far too long.

As one who uses a wheelchair, I have seen that not only must municipal buildings and services be accessible to people with disabilities, but all facilities used by the public, including stores, restaurants, hotels, entertainment venues and medical offices.

One would think that all medical facilities would be accessible, but it is shocking how many have steps to get in and restrooms that cannot accommodate a wheelchair.

Wheelchair access is a focus of the Town of Huntington’s Citizens Advisory Committee for Persons With Disabilities, of which I am a member. We have worked to make the town’s parks and beaches accessible.

People have to do more than “make a wave about it” to get the Americans With Disabilities Act enforced, as Therese Brzezinski, director of planning and public policy for the LI Center for Independent Living Inc., is quoted as saying. We have to file a formal complaint with the Department of Justice and file a lawsuit.

Tamar Asedo Sherman,

  Northport

Some post offices are among the offenders for access. At the post office at 830 Stewart Ave. in Garden City, I watched an older woman with a cane struggle to open two sets of heavy glass doors. These federal properties should have been addressed when the Americans With Disabilities Act became law in 1990.

Clara Toledano,

  East Meadow

America’s history isn’t all heroic

William F.B. O’Reilly’s May 27 opinion-page column, “Are any of us worthy of our brave ancestors?,” could leave the impression that all Americans in the past were heroic and patriotic. Far from it.

Consider the draft riots in New York City in 1863, in the middle of the Civil War. One reason for the riots was a protest against rules that let people of means buy their way out of the military draft for $300, which forced poorer men to be drafted in their place; $300 in 1863 would have a value of roughly $6,000 today.

America’s history is messy. It is chock-full of heroes, villains and cowards, and for as long as this great republic lasts, it will be that way.

James A. Clark,

  Syosset

President should have been in U.S. on Monday

I would like to thank President Donald Trump for honoring this country’s war dead on Memorial Day by going to Japan [“Trump, Japan’s Abe at odds over N. Korea missile tests,” News, May 28].

Actually, the truth is, I felt insulted that our commander in chief would be out of the country on this important holiday. I know he placed flags at Arlington National Cemetery on May 23, but I believe he should have been there on Monday.

Some fellow members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the American Legion shared my opinion when we talked about it after the East Rockaway Memorial Day parade.

I believe Trump has done some good things and some bad things, but on this matter, he made a mistake.

Joseph Bruzzo,

  East Rockaway

Editor’s note: The writer served on U.S. Navy submarines off Korea from 1955-59.

NY should pass bill to fight climate change

As a teacher, I know how important it is to model the right thing for others, and New York State now has the opportunity to model for the rest of the nation how to address climate change and protect our environment in the most effective way possible. And that way is by passing the Climate and Community Protection Act.

As your May 17 editorial, “Heat on Albany for climate pact,” said, “A comprehensive climate plan must include buildings, transportation, agriculture and manufacturing.”

Unlike other plans that fall short, the Climate and Community Protection Act would move all sectors of New York’s economy off fossil fuels, not just electricity; set a deadline for that transition; invest 40 percent of state climate funds in communities that are bearing the brunt of climate change and pollution; and make sure green jobs pay prevailing wages.

More than 150 community, faith, labor, and environmental organizations across the state support passing the act with these provisions. Albany must do the right and necessary thing now to ensure the protection of our great state and our children’s future, and to set the example for the rest of the nation.

Laura Maffei,

Cedarhurst

The proposed Climate and Community Protection Act offers important language on investing in disadvantaged communities and improving statewide health outcomes. It also helps ensure that workers employed on these projects will receive fair wages. Any state plan should include these key benefits.

A commitment to create a zero-carbon energy future will offer New York major health and economic advantages and will dramatically reduce our dependence on imported fossil fuels. Albany should not delay. Pass a significant climate bill this session.

Scott Carlin,

Hampton Bays

Editor’s note: The writer teaches about environmental sustainability at LIU Post and was a co-chair of the Sustainable Advisory Committee for the Town of Southampton.

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