Health & Fitness

Miami Springs settles suit alleging city’s website violated ADA

Juan Carlos Gil, who was born with cerebral palsy and is legally blind, uses his racing wheelchair to train at Tropical Park in this file photo. In October 2018, Gil sued the city of Miami Springs, contending the city’s website violated the Americans with Disabilities Act because people who are blind or low sighted cannot access it. The city settled the suit for $11,000.
Juan Carlos Gil, who was born with cerebral palsy and is legally blind, uses his racing wheelchair to train at Tropical Park in this file photo. In October 2018, Gil sued the city of Miami Springs, contending the city’s website violated the Americans with Disabilities Act because people who are blind or low sighted cannot access it. The city settled the suit for $11,000. Miami Herald file

The City of Miami Springs has quietly settled an ADA lawsuit.

Juan Carlos Gil, 37, who has cerebral palsy and is legally blind, settled a federal case Feb. 11 against Miami Springs. The suit alleged the city was violating the Americans with Disabilities Act.

“Because [Miami Springs’] online electronic document content is not available for persons who are blind or low sighted, defendant has denied plaintiff access to that electronic content,” states the 30-page complaint filed on Oct. 19 in Miami District Court.

Gil, a spirited advocate for the disabled, has filed many similar cases throughout the state, contending some local government websites do not accommodate blind and vision-impaired users.

The gist of Gil’s prodigious filings might best be summed up by the Napoleonic quote cited in his federal complaint: “There are only two powers in the world, the sword and the spirit: In the long run, the sword is always defeated by the spirit.”

A public records request seeking to know whether there were additional settlement terms, and whether the case has been discussed publicly at council meetings, is pending review by city officials.

“Our insurer settled the case for $11,000,” Miami Springs City Manager William Alonso said.

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