Thursday, July 4, 2013

A note to Chef Graham Elliot, re: accessibility

My good friend wrote this letter and I anted to share it here. I have left his name out for confidentiality.
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Chef Elliot:
My wife and I ate at Graham Elliot on Saturday evening and enjoyed our meal. I am happy we went and have told many people that it was an incredible experience in pretty much every way.

The concern I would like to share with you relates to accessibility. I have MS and use a manual wheelchair. Upon arriving at your restaurant, we discovered that you have chosen a building that is almost completely inaccessible. In my case, fortunately, I am able to walk very short distances, so we made it work and enjoyed a lovely meal.

If I had not been able to walk up the stairs it would have been extremely difficult (even with the ramp that your kind staff was trying to figure out how to get into place). If I used a much heavier motorized chair, I do not see how we could have entered the building.

As a HUGE fan of Masterchef and now of your flagship restaurant, I do not believe you want to send your wheelchair-using potential patrons the message that you do not care about us, but this is what you are inadvertently doing.

The easiest way to solve this would be to install a wheelchair lift at your entrance. It would also be helpful if you could put information on your website about current accessibility issues (and, if you get the lift, you could highlight this as a good thing about your restaurant).

Please forgive my offering unsolicited advice -- something I tend to avoid -- but this situation marred what would otherwise have been a perfect life-memory for my wife and me, and I thought you would want to know.

Thank you for your time and consideration.
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If you too have such an issue do not be afraid to contact the establishment with your concerns. :)

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