NDSU Reaches Settlement With U.S Attorney’s Office For ADA Violations

The findings found the university did not provide enough wheelchair seating, seating for companions of wheelchair users and accessible aisle seating.

FARGO, N.D. — All Tammy DeSautel and her daughter Macy wanted to do was watch basketball at the SHAC at NDSU.

“Ya know we were just there to watch a game and to have some fun and cheer, ya know my nephews it just really threw me off guard when we ran into those obstacles,” DeSautel said.

Those obstacles became clear when Tammy asked for a chair to sit next to Macy who has cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair.

“So I asked one of the ushers if I could have a chair to sit next too Macy and he told me no because if they did that for one person they would have to do that for everybody.”

To make matters worse, the pair could only sit on the opposing sideline because there was no accessible seats available.

“Not only just for her safety but the primary concern of course is her safety but it was so that she could be included with the other fans, the people she was with,” DeSautel

The problems they faced were the similar to the ones the U.S Attorney’s Office found against NDSU and the SHAC for violating the Americans with Disabilities Act.

The findings found the university did not provide enough wheelchair seating, seating for companions of wheelchair users and accessible aisle seating.

NDSU reached a settlement and will work to fix its mistakes.

“We are looking at construction documents, we are looking at all those things, we are trying to understand what fell through the cracks and what can we do to improve that in the future,”  Director of Facilities Management, NDSU, Michael Ellingson said.

Tammy says she is glad the changes are happening but says builders and communities can do more.

“Not only be ADA compliant but, why not set the bar and go above and beyond and include the people with disabilities? Include our community making those designs and making those decisions,” DeSautel said.

Categories: Local News, North Dakota News