This letter is in response to my finding out that the Columbia Star Dinner Train will not have a fully Americans with Disabilities Act-compatible passenger car.
Tossed under the train at the taxpayer's expense. If the Disabilities Commission would have been included in this from the beginning, we would not be at the point we are at now.
Homer Page, the chairman of the Disabilities Commission, being unwilling to challenge the status quo did not help matters any, either. It took Troy Balthazor, John Hinten and Gretchen Maune of the Mid-Missouri Advocacy Coalition and other truly concerned disability advocates to stand up and make some real noise on this issue.
I, myself, was ruled out of order over this issue while on the Disabilities Commission. Go back and read all of the minutes from the Disabilities Commission on this issue.
This just makes me even more sick to my stomach. Send the train packing back to Iowa where it belongs since it is not completely ADA-friendly. Stand as one, Columbia, and stand behind and with the disabled community on this issue of the lack of equal access. Don't let this happen again.
Charles E. Dudley Jr. is a former Columbia resident and former member of the Disabilities Commission of the City of Columbia. He currently resides in Jackson, Calif.