Making Disney More Accessible
Since August, Disney has been adding more accommodations at its theme parks to make them more accessible to people with disabilities.
The DAS Program
In 2013, due to “abused and exploited” use, Disney decided to end their Guest Assistance Card, which allowed visitors with disabilities to skip in front of lines for rides. This system was replaced with the Disability Access Service (DAS) program, which resulted in many complaints from families of visitors with developmental disabilities who argued that “the more restricted access was a violation of their rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act.”
In response, Disney is improving its DAS Program.
Disney’s DAS Program allows for individuals with disabilities to not have to physically remain in long lines waiting for rides.
Starting this fall, visitors will be able to seek accommodations up to 30 days prior to their visit to Disney through a live video chat with a cast member. This is an improvement over the past requirement of being physically present at Disney World or Disneyland to seek these accommodations.
The DAS will also allow visitors to use an app to get a return time for each attraction rather than having to physically go to the kiosk itself before each ride.
Disney has also decided to implement a new digital tool, the Disney Genie, to provide for further accommodations. This tool offers a personalized itinerary for each individual and is designed to update the individual on the current and expected waiting time for each attraction.