Group 1 Project Open Doors: Extending Hospitality to Travelers with Disabilities
This report serves to review the research completed by Eric Lipp and the Open Doors Organization (ODO). Through familiarity with the issue, analysis, and sound recommendations, we conclude that the research was sound and beneficial to a very large demographic of people with disabilities.
MGMT 3350-Business Research Methods
Dr. Aytun Ozturk
DRAFT 16 April 2012
Construction worker Eric Pearson was doing his typical nightly duties while his company was paving a major highway in Colorado on a clear, summer night in July 2002. He had just come from taking core samples from one side of the road and parked his work truck, lights still flashing, off of the frontage road out of the way of the big machines that were laying and pressing asphalt on the other side of the road. Little did he know that a van, whose headlights were off, was speeding toward him until he had been hit by the vehicle and subsequently thrown 30 feet into a ditch after stepping out of his truck. The van sped away from the scene and just as Eric had not heard the van coming his way, the pavers had been too loud for his fellow employees to recognize the incident had happened either. Eric lived, but he is now permanently disabled. He no longer has a left leg and can barely walk with this condition. Eric was fortunate to be born without a disability, but he is now part of the millions of people who are disabled in some form. “The Disability Statistics Rehabilitation, Research and Training Center at the University of California-San Francisco said that there were about 61 million disabled persons in 1992, or 24 percent of the population” (Worsnop 1108). Since then that number has increased due to the fact that the term “disabled” has now been broadened to include various other conditions as opposed to being restricted to physical conditions only. In fact, Congress by enacting the Americans with Disabilities Act classifies an individual disabled based on a series of the following three tests: “(1) A physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of the major life activities of such individual;” “(2) A record of such an impairment; or”
“(3) Being regarded as having such an impairment.”
-Congress, U.S. Department of Justice Online
According to the same section of title II of the ADA regulation published July 26, 1991, congress prescribes the following: “if an individual meets any one of these three tests, he or she is considered to be an individual with a disability for purposes of coverage under the Americans with Disabilities Act” (U.S. Department of Justice Online, n.p.). Problem Recognition:
The Open Doors Organization (ODO) did bring the issue of persons with disabilities to the forefront. Specifically, the organization focused on persons with disabilities not being able to enjoy what those considered non-disabled would—hospitality when traveling. “People look and treat you differently wherever you go” said Eric Pearson now living with his injury for over ten years (Interview). Mr. Pearson gives one example of essentially how he is discriminated against when he travels. With the increase in airport security after the September 11, 2001 attacks, Mr. Pearson says he has to remove his prosthesis for inspection and has to be evaluated in a special room due to the metal plates in his leg. He says he feels sorry for the people in wheelchairs the most and is thankful that he can still walk on his own. “We all [(people with disabilities)] just want to be treated like normal people” (Pearson Interview). When Mr. Pearson and those considered disabled travel, they simply want to be treated with the same care and consideration any other person would want and deserves. Problem Statement:
ODO recognized that...
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