Colorado group sues Hollister to make stores handicapped accessible

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DENVER — A disability advocacy group is hoping a Federal judge will issue an injunction against clothing retailer Hollister to force the company to comply with a previous ruling surrounding access for the disabled to its stores nationwide.

Hollister, which markets itself as a teenager’s place to find Southern California clothing, operates stores across the country and has been the focus of the a class action lawsuit since 2009.

The lawsuit, brought on by the Colorado Cross-Disability Coalition, is focused on the store’s front entrance which the plaintiffs believe do not allow equal access to disabled customers.

The entrances, which can be found at stores including at Park Meadows Mall, features steps to enter and exit. There are side entrances accessible with a push button for the handicap but a Federal judge agreed the company could do more to comply with the American with Disabilities Act.

“The only thing the plaintiffs in this case are seeking are changes to the stores, to make them to accessible so that people can have the same full and equal enjoyment of accessing the store,” said Kevin Williams, the legal program director of the Colorado Cross-Disability Coalition.

In an interview with FOX-31 Denver, the Coalition called for Hollister to come up with a reasonable timeline for the clothing giant to make their stores more accessible. In a written statement on Wednesday, the company said it expects to work with the coalition to find a solution agreeable to by both parties.

We are surprised by the Judge’s decision that the Hollister entrances are not compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”). We’ve maintained throughout the litigation, and continue to maintain, that the stores comply with the ADA and allow access to all patrons. Beyond that, we want all of our customers to have a positive experience when shopping in our stores. While we reserve the right to appeal the underlying legal issue, we are currently working with the court and the plaintiffs to reach a mutually agreeable resolution.”

A hearing is set for August 16th to determine what steps the company should take to modify their stores.

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