AUG 30 1993

The Honorable Charles S. Robb United States Senator Old City Hall 1001 East Broad Street Richmond, Virginia 23219 Dear Senator Robb: This is in response to your inquiry on behalf of your constituent, xxxxx concerning the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Your constituent complains of barriers to people who use wheelchairs in entering and maneuvering around the lobby of his apartment building xxxxxxx The ADA authorizes the Department of Justice to provide technical assistance to individuals and entities having rights or obligations under the Act. This letter provides informal guidance to assist your constituent in understanding the ADA's requirements. However, it does not constitute a legal interpretation or legal advice, and it is not binding on the Department. Title III of the ADA does not apply to strictly residential facilities. Nonetheless, the apartment complex and its lobby are subject to the requirements of the Fair Housing Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability and is enforced by the Department of Housing and Urban Development. For more information about the requirements of the Fair Housing Act, your constituent may wish to contact the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, specifically its Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity at the following address: Office of Fair Housing and Equal opportunity U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 451 7th Street, S.W. Washington, D.C. 20410 or by calling (202) 708-3855 cc: Records; chrono; Wodatch; McDowney; Breen; Novich; FOIA, MAF \udd\burton\robbpol

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-2In certain circumstances an apartment lobby may be covered by the ADA, if portions of the apartment complex, such as a party room or swimming pool, are made available for use by the general public, i.e., persons other than tenants or their guests. ADA coverage would also result where a facility provides enough social services for it to be considered a social service center establishment. Once covered by the ADA, the owners or operators of an existing apartment building would be required to remove architectural barriers to accessibility if their removal is readily achievable, that is, if they can be removed without much difficulty or expense. For more information on readily achievable barrier removal, see 36-304 at pages 35,597 - 35,598 of the enclosed title III regulation. I hope this information is useful to your constituent in understanding the apartment complex's obligations.

Sincerely,

James P. Turner Acting Assistant Attorney General Civil Rights Division

Enclosure

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(Handwritten)

Senator Charles Robb 1001 East Broad Street Richmond, VA 23219

Dear Senator Robb, I live at XX , Virginia. I also have a 93 year old invalid mother who uses a wheelchair and walker. In the lobby XX there are 3 steps which must be negotiated any time I have to or wish to take my mother out. In order to do this she gets in the wheel chair at the apartment

and we go to the steps. I have to take her only the chair support a great deal of her weight to get her down these steps, then back into the wheelchair & to the car. If we wish to sit in the lobby, which we do daily, we go through the same ordeal. The management has been telling us for over a year we are getting a lift or ramp. So far nothing.

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2

I am of the opinion that the American Disability Act states people areas must meet the needs of the handicap. I would appreciate your help

in having these people comply with the law. The Management Company is: XX Thank you so much Sincerely,

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