Outspoken disability advocates calls for change at the Plattsburgh Airport


Debra Buell is an outspoken advocate for individuals with disabilities.

“It is demoralizing, depressing and even sometimes enraging,” said Buell.

Although she uses a wheelchair for mobility, she does let that silence her voice when it comes to what she calls injustices.

After a recent survey she determined that the airport was not in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Buell says she found violations with the handicap van lanes not being large enough for standard wheelchairs and the handicap signs not being in place.

“I’m hoping that what they do is establish the right amount of parking spaces, including van accessible spaces. I’m hoping that they change they will changes that “Y” entrance to something that’s a straight across route. I’m hoping that for the temporary construction period that they find a way locate some parking closure to the building because they are too far away,” said Buell.

In a phone call Thursday, Clinton County Deputy Administrator Rodney Brown told Local 22 News that Ms. Buell’s charges were not a news story and a waste of the county’s time and resources.

He then released a statement saying, in part, “we will be reviewing the concerns with our consulting engineers and taking any appropriate action required.”

“Whether it’s an issue of access for a blind person a deaf person a mentally ill person or a person with a mobility impairment, when you run into these things every day you start to feel like you are less than human,” said Buell.

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