Subway Class Notice January 2023


A court authorized this notice. This is not a solicitation from a lawyer.

You might be a member of a proposed settlement class if:

  1. You have a disability that makes the use of stairs difficult or impossible; and
  2. You require stair-free paths of travel in the New York City subway system.


The proposed settlement agreement would settle two pending class action lawsuits brought by multiple disability rights organizations and several individuals who use wheelchairs against the MTA and NYC Transit (“Defendants”). These cases challenge the inaccessibility of the New York City subway system on behalf of persons with mobility disabilities, including those who use wheelchairs or other mobility aids (including walkers, crutches or canes).

The first lawsuit, Center for Independence of the Disabled, New York v. Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Case No. 153765/2017 (Supreme Court, NY County), alleges that Defendants’ failure to install elevators or other forms of stair-free travel at approximately 75% of subway stations denies them equal access to the system in violation of NYC local law. The second lawsuit, De La Rosa v. Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Case No. 19-cv-4406 (S.D.N.Y.), argues that Defendants have a discriminatory practice of renovating subway stations without installing stair-free routes in violation of federal and local law.

In 2022, the Parties reached a settlement of both lawsuits, in which Defendants agreed, subject to certain conditions, to:

  1. Ensure that at least 95% of the MTA’s 364 currently-inaccessible subway stations (as identified in the settlement agreement) are accessible by 2055 (subject to terms including funding availability and inflation).
  2. Commit to defined funding levels for each MTA Five Year Capital Plan to be used to renovate stations to provide stair-free access.
  3. Modify their policies to require the addition of stair-free access during certain station renovation projects.


To obtain copies of this Notice in alternative accessible formats or languages please email, or, or call 332-217-2363.

You can read the long forms class notice here: NOTICE OF PROPOSED SETTLEMENT OF CLASS ACTION LAWSUITS.

For notices in additional languages, please visit

Click here for updated information about the Fairness Hearing where the Court will determine whether to approve the settlement.

Thirty Two Years of the Americans with Disabilities Act

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law 32 years ago today. It was a landmark achievement and life-changing legislation. So much work has been done, so much has been achieved, but there’s still more work to do. On this anniversary, we would like to share a personal story from executive director Dr. Sharon McLennon-Wier reflecting on the ADA.


The following story is from CIDNY executive director Dr. Sharon McLennon-Wier:

On July 26, 1990, Pres. George H.W. Bush signed into law the Americans with Disabilities Act. Since this seminal piece of legislation was enacted, July has been disability pride awareness month, and we take this opportunity to reflect on the accomplishments that this critical legislation provided for people with disabilities living in the United States.

This law characterized that a person with a disability was classified as having a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a person from completing a major life activity. Life activities such as seeing, hearing, understanding and processing information, writing, reading, talking, walking, breathing, thinking and so much more.

This legislation provided the disabled person the right to access and further required integration for persons with disabilities into life activities such as employment, entry into environmental spaces, transportation, technology and recreational spaces.

In 1990, I was an undergraduate-biology student attending Syracuse University. I was totally blind, and I had much optimism for this new legislation. I had the conviction that despite my blindness, I could work hard and I would achieve a degree in medicine.

My belief was that my hard work, fortitude, intelligence, passion and resilience coupled with this new legislation providing access to the sciences would help me to achieve my medical goal. I did not think that one’s preconceived notions, ableism, prejudice and stigma would be further obstacles in the road to my vocational goal.

Legislation can help to remove the obvious physical barriers for people with disabilities, but there are so many invisible barriers encompassed via the human disposition toward preconceived notions, ableism, prejudice and stigma. Therefore, as we reflect on this disability pride awareness month, we acknowledge the many accomplishments that this legislation achieved for people with disabilities.

More people with disabilities became employed. More people with disabilities have access to standard bus and train service. More people with disabilities can use a restroom which provides room for their wheelchair. More people with disabilities can cross a street in the middle of New York City by using auditable pedestrian signaling and curb cuts. More people with disabilities can use a bank ATM independently and so much more.

However, we still have a long way to go. We still need to improve the way people without disabilities think about people with disabilities. Having a disability does not mean that your life is over. At times, it could mean that it is just beginning.

We need to remember that the life activities such as family, love, work and play are critical for all. We all want to achieve these milestones, we just need an environment free of physical and human-dispositional barriers. As a result, we have disability-rights organization like CIDNY to help advocate and educate all people regarding diversity, equality and inclusion for a society built on difference.

We all can achieve our goals – it just takes one step at a time. By the way, I am happy to report that I was able to achieve a career in the field of human service and psychology despite having a visual disability. Please pursue your dreams and CIDNY is here to help you!


This story first appeared in an issue of Able Newspaper.

If you would like to support our work and the people we serve, you can do so at

A Statement on the US Supreme Court Appointment of Ketanji Brown Jackson

In a historic moment, Ketanji Brown Jackson has been confirmed as the first Black Woman and first public defender, to the United States Supreme Court. CIDNY applauds the decision to appoint and confirm a highly qualified individual who will help ensure that the makeup of the highest court in the land represents the people of the United States. This is a strong statement toward equity and inclusion at the highest level.  We hope that this well-qualified justice will continue to uphold the rights of persons with disabilities!

A Tribute to Gabriel Gherasim

Photo of Gabriel Gherasim, MA, Borough Manager,  NY Connects at CIDNY

It is with great sadness that we mourn the passing of our colleague, Gabriel Gherasim. Gabriel had been with CIDNY since 2017 and most recently served as the Borough Manager for Manhattan for the NY Connects program.

Gabriel was born in Romania and came to the United States from Italy as a refugee. After graduated high school, he obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Social Sciences from Portland State University and a Master’s degree in Mediation, Negotiation and Conflict Resolution from California State University. Gabriel also received a Substance Abuse Counseling Certification from the New York State Office of Alcohol and Substance Abuse Services.

For more than 20 years, Gabriel has worked with a number of non-profit organizations, service-first government agencies and as an educator at the Long Island Business Institute. Gabriel has also authored 10 books (available from Vervante Press here). More of his writing is available on his website at Gabriel’s dedication to helping others, especially people with disabilities, was paramount.

Gabriel once said that life, freedom, health, employment, and just every day are gifts. Let us continue to honor him with the work that we do each day. Gabriel, you will be missed.