Many organizations forgo updating the accessibility of their buildings because they believe that these updates are costly and unnecessary because they have never received complaints. What they don’t realize is that the potential cost of not updating could be far greater.
Many accessibility standards, like those outlined by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) are easy and inexpensive to achieve. However, even if your building requires significant renovations to achieve compliance, these costs are likely to be far less than the cost of complaints, especially if one (or more) of those complaints turn into a lawsuit. It’s only a matter of time for organizations to receive accessibility complaints if they have been ignoring accessibility standards. According to the CDC, more than 22 percent of the U.S. population have some kind of disability.
If a building occupant or employee files a formal complaint, the courts or the U.S. Department of Justice will order you to remove any barriers to accessibility by a certain time, and they will not take into account the financial impact of their orders on your organization. If an occupant/employee argues that their complaints were ignored or they experienced some sort of harm as a result of the lack of compliance, they could file a lawsuit.
It is in your organization’s best interest to confirm that your buildings follow all applicable accessibility standards. The checklist below can help you determine what your problem areas are and how to resolve them. Click on the image below to download the checklist.
How FMX can help
If you’ve determined that it’s time to make some accessibility upgrades to your building, FMX can help you get these projects on your schedule. With FMX, you can create preventive maintenance tasks for projects and schedule them days, weeks, months, even years in advance. You can even assign these tasks to outside vendors. You can also use FMX to track the overall cost associated with each task.
Allison is a product marketing manager at Facilities Management eXpress. When she’s not writing marketing content, she is likely hiking with her dog or cooking delicious Italian food.