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Unheard of Discrimination on Peter Pan

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  • Unheard of Discrimination on Peter Pan

    While at Disney World yesterday my 17yo brother experienced what had to feel like the worst thing that has ever happened to him at a Disney park before. My family(consisting of my mom, my aunt, my 19yo sister, my 17yo brother who is in a wheelchair, and my 10yo brother) went through the exit as they normally would to get on Peter Pan's Flight. The cast member there asked my mom if my brother could get onto the ride vehicle quickly. My mom said that he couldn't and that in the past they have stopped the ride for my brother to crawl on. At this point the cast member told my mom that they could not stop the ride for my brother and that my brother could not get on the ride unless he could get on in the normal amount of time that the ride is stopped at the exit. My brother, who has behavior problems, began cursing about not getting on the ride. My mom was getting fairly upset too and asked to speak to a manager. The manager told her the same thing. My mom was so upset that she threatened to do something that in all our years of going to Disneyland she swore she would never do...sue Disney. Now, in our family, Disney is sacred. My sister has cut the side of her face and had to go to the nurses station after falling on Tom Sawyer Island. My brother (only 4 months ago) was getting off of Big Thunder Mountain and cut the end of his finger and was bleeding profusely because of a sharp edge on the wood. My Grandma has fallen and "couldn't get up" while getting into Pirates of the Caribbean....and my mom has had to make a trip herself to the nurses station at Disneyland when she got an ash in her eye from Fantasmic! and couldn't see for a few days...and my mom was so confident that none of this was on purpose and truly believes in the magic of Disney that she swore she would NEVER sue Disney. But, in all my years of going to Disneyland I never ONCE recall a time when someone said that my brother couldn't do something because of his disability. In fact, the opposite is true. Every single cast member has gone above and beyond to ensure that my brother get on the ride and has even many a times told my family to take their time helping my brother onto the ride. They've even allowed him to get onto rides that are very very difficult for someone crawling and having to be lifted onto the ride(my brother is 210 lbs.)and never once seemed irritated that he was taking too long or asked us to hurry up. The ride stopped if need be to accomodate his need. I just heard about this today from my 10yo brother. He was pretty upset because he didn't think it was fair. My mom was even more upset because she has spent over $15,000 on this vacation only to have my brother feel like he's "less than" or "not good enough" or "not fast enough" to ride a ride at Disney World. I am shocked and outraged and hope that it is just a few peoples' mishap and not truly the "policy" as stated by the manager of the ride! Anyone else have any similar experiences?

  • #2
    Luckily I don't have a similar experience to share, but holy moly am I mad at this point. Mad and disappointed. How DARE those cast members treat your brother that way! That's just so very, very wrong!!!

    July 1987 - offsite, 1-day visit to the MK; July-August 2000 - honeymoon - Port Orleans (now POFQ); May 2003 - Caribbean Beach Resort; Dec 2003 - Coronado Springs; April 2004 - Pop Century (PC) & POFQ; Sept 2004 - Animal Kingdom Lodge; May 2005 - Port Orleans Riverside; Sept 2005 - PC; Oct 2006 - POFQ; Apr 2007 - PC; July 2007 - Boardwalk Villas (WOO HOO! I was at WDW in the MK on the 20th anniversary of my first visit!); August - Sept 2007 - Old Key West; Sept 2007 - Saratoga Springs; Oct 2007 - BWV; Mar-Apr 2008 - SS

    Dec 2001 - Grand Californian; Jan 2005 - GC; July 2005 - HoJo Anaheim & GC; Dec 2008 - Best Western Park Place Inn

    p.s. Wanna buy a :monkey:?


    • #3
      That's terrible to be treated that way! I am also confined to a wheelchair but am mobile enough to get onto the rides in a quick amount of time. I have been told by CM's before that if I can't get onto the ride quickly that they will have to shut the ride down so maybe it has something to do with that? Hopefully a CM will post here and explain their policy?

      I have been to state fairs and such before where they absolutely refused to let me ride on their rides but who wants to ride on those unsafe rides anyway? I'm really sorry to hear your situation and I am always worried about that sort of discrimination happening to me.


      • #4
        Man, that is soooo dammed wrong. I constantly see the rides getting shutdown for accessability. Sorry to hear that.
        He felt like his life was some kind of dream and he sometimes wondered whose it was and whether they were enjoying it.
        follow us on Twitter! @MickeyMutineers
        DisregardListen to our podcast on iTunes!


        • #5
          I have to admit that I have been the person in line tapping my foot when I feel it is moving too slowly. But hearing how your brother was turned away makes me ashamed of myself.

          Earth to Disney: It's o.k. to take 15 extra seconds to help someone with a Disability. (I am SOOOO impatient. You have no idea how hard it is for me to say that. )

          I would have sworn that the opposite would have been true. Like you said, this hasn't been a problem in the past. Is this their new policy? :confused:

 sounds like your family has had the WORST luck. Maybe statistically you have been to the park more than most and that's why your family has had so many injuries. Holy cow....


          • #6
            Peter Pan should not have been a problem stopping and starting. Not as if the ships are going to hit each other.

            Other rides that are timed to a cycle are a bit more logistically complicated, but a seasoned cast member team should be able to create a buffer for a train or boat to get more time for loading and unloading.
            Also, it helps if the guest party (not DisneyWorld) has someone who can assist those who need help loading and unloading.
            A ride with high capacity, which depends on timed loading and unloading or people could get hurt, that gets shut down for 20 minutes to be cycled can affect thousands of guests.


            • #7
              If it was Space, I could understand, since there is a cascade risk... but Pan???? Gimme a break.

              Unusually and exceedingly peculiar and altogether quite impossible to describe...


              • #8
                I certainly hope this is just some rogue CM's making their own policy and not Disney's new policy. Have you or anyone in your family contacted Disney about this? I wish you luck with getting some satisfaction from Disney on it and hope it never, ever happens again. It's totally uncalled for, extremely rude, completely unfair and possibly illegal!

                To answer your question, in 4 visits to WDW, I haven't seen anything like this happen.


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Pacha
                  To answer your question, in 4 visits to WDW, I haven't seen anything like this happen.
                  In 2 years as an AP holder I've never seen this....
                  He felt like his life was some kind of dream and he sometimes wondered whose it was and whether they were enjoying it.
                  follow us on Twitter! @MickeyMutineers
                  DisregardListen to our podcast on iTunes!


                  • #10
                    I suggest contacting Guest Relations and complaining and ask for an explanation. This is unheard of.


                    • #11
                      Never have I heard of such a thing... On my most recent trip WDW, the cast members seemed always more than willing to help my grandmother from her wheel chair. Of course, she only went on a few rides. But I do remember Peter Pan being a problem. I can't remember the exact situation, it was nothing compared to your issue, but we did have a couple of CMs being hesitant before she was allowed to be helped onto the ride. I wonder...
                      I hope that the situation gets resolved, and it doesn't damage your family's relationship w/ Disney.

                      edit: BTW, the trip was in 2003


                      • #12
                        You'd think that with all that's happened over the years we would know about going to Guest Relations. But, ONLY when I joined Mice Chat and started reading the boards did I even think to complain about ANYTHING. I was such a Disney idealist(still am to a certain extent). This does not mar the reputation of Disney in my eyes at all!! Because as I said for this ONE experience there are literally THOUSANDS of others that were the opposite experience. Those CM's are just lucky that Eric(my husband) and I had already gone home and were sitting at work in Wisconsin when this happened. It would NOT have been pretty! We know discrimination and don't take too kindly to it. But, as I said...all is well and as far as I know the rest of their trip was magical save for this one part. But, it was such a stark contrast to our previous experience that I had to say something. Thank you all for your kind words. I only hope that next time I go to WDW with my family that they have "fixed" whatever there is to be "fixed".


                        • #13
                          Not all of Disney is like this. WDW needs some lessons from the cruiseline. When we were anchored in Cabo, the only way to go ashore was down a steep flight of steps from the gangway and onto the tender boats. Teams of DCL CMs were actually carrying people in their wheelchairs down those steps. If they can do it on a ship, they need to make the same accommodations at the parks. That is asburd!

                          Now, I understand that some ride systems can be jeopardized by stopping, but in those cases, Disney needs to make the wheelchair-bound person still feel important, and go out of their way to make them happy with an alternate solution. I'm appalled at your brother's treatment!


                          • #14
                            They were not the only cast members with problems at WDW! That's for another thread though(to be started later because I have to leave for work soon!). We experienced some RUDE cast members during OUR 3-day stay! One even went so far as to call us "Beach People"! when he was trying to call us to get onto his bus that was supposed to be going to another resort(we were staying at the Beach Club). Can you imagine a lovely luau at the Polynesian feeling so immersed and magical and then all of the sudden....."HELLO...BEACH PEOPLE!!! HELLO!!!!! BEACH PEOPLE!!!" That was a comic Disney memory to last a lifetime. I kept turning to Eric and saying "they would NEVER act like this in Disneyland!". I think some of the CM's at WDW don't have respect for the Disney name. I could be wrong though.


                            • #15
                              The whole story sounds very weird to me. I'm quite sure they can slow Pan down to allow folks to transfer from their wheelchairs. Again, I'm not sure why they wouldn't have done that. It could just have been bad CMs or there could be other circumstances. I'm sure that, disability or no disability, having your brother curse to the CMs in front of children didn't make the situation any better either. Since neither you nor any of us were there, it's very difficult to say what the problem was/is.

                              To sue Disney over this, I think, is ridiculous. They are as proactive for guests with disabilities as any company I have ever seen.

                              Still, I do think your mom/brother are owed an explanation if not an apology. I would contact Guest Relations, but if you feel you aren't being dealt with fairly (or just given the company line) I would get in touch with Phil Holmes, the VP of the MK.

                              I'm not sure what went down, but something sure sounds screwy.
                              Last edited by WDW1974; 06-23-2005, 06:31 PM.


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