Disabled parking spaces covered up at Hispanic Cultural Center

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – In a post on the City of Albuquerque’s 311 app, a user shared a photo stating “multiple” disabled parking spaces at the National Hispanic Cultural Center were covered up over the weekend.

“It’s really discouraging, particularly when it’s a publically financed facility. This is an agency that’s been around for awhile. I’m sure they’re well aware of the requirements of the ADA {Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990} and state law,” said James Jackson the CEO of Disability Rights New Mexico.

New Mexico State Law says every parking lot must have a certain number of parking spaces designated for people with disabilities.

“So, if they’re closing them up, if they’re diverting them to other use during a time the facility is open to the public, I think they’re violating the law,” said Jackson.

The user stated he saw these signs on Sunday, September 17 during the Japanese Fall Festival which ran from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. On Sundays, the Hispanic Cultural Center is open from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

The user says that the covered parking spots were covered “to allow sponsors better parking at the National Hispanic Cultural Center.”

“It’s just kind of abusive and it’s just not very nice,” said Venae Warner, a concerned citizen.

KRQE News 13 asked the National Hispanic Cultural Center if those covered parking spaces were for sponsors or donors. That question was not answered in the statement the Executive Director of NHCC, Rebecca Avitia, released to KRQE News 13.

The statement said:

This should have never happened and we apologize to the public. These signs were posted as a temporary arrangement for an after hours event and should have been removed immediately the next day. It was a mistake that they were not, and we are very sorry. It has now been corrected. We are dedicated to keeping our Center accessible to all visitors.

As of Tuesday afternoon, the covered spaces were back to normal.

People KRQE News 13 spoke with say they don’t think disabled parking spaces should be covered for any reason.

“No, it’s that simple. No,” said Warner.

Jackson says if you see violations of the ADA anywhere in Albuquerque, you should contact Disability Rights New Mexico.

For contact information, click here.

KRQE.com provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s