ADA complaint filed against NIC - Coeur d'Alene Press: Local News

ADA complaint filed against NIC

Cd'A man says he was initially denied use of service dog

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Posted: Friday, September 21, 2012 12:15 am

A disabled Coeur d'Alene man has filed a complaint against North Idaho College through the Disability Action Center Northwest, after he was initially denied using his service dog in class.

He also contends that NIC's requirements for approval of the dog were illegal under Americans with Disabilities Act.

"All I wanted to do was go to school. I didn't think I would have all these obstacles," said Cruz, 58, who had hoped to pursue paralegal studies.

Virgil Edwards, independent living advocate with the Disability Action Center, supports Cruz's complaint, submitted this week to the Office for Civil Rights in Seattle.

"What they're doing is blatantly against the law," Edwards said.

Cruz said he registered for the NIC fall semester and was granted financial aid, before he approached the school's Center for Educational Access about accommodating his disabilities.

He requested a special chair for his spinal stenosis. Cruz, a diabetic, also requested to use his service dog in class. The dog is trained to alert Cruz when his blood pressure is too low.

The CEA took from late July to the end of August to process his requests, Cruz said.

He was asked to provide several items to secure approval, he said. That included documentation proving he earned disability benefits and providing a new doctor's prescription for the service dog, though he already had one.

"It was dated 2009, and (staff) told me that that was too old," Cruz said.

Edwards said the school's requests violate ADA requirements. According to federal law, which can be read at, it is illegal for staff to ask about an individual's disability, require medical documentation or training documentation for a service dog.

"They can't ask for documentation. And they not only asked for documentation, but when they got it, they said it was old," Edwards said.

Staff is only allowed to ask two specific questions about a service animal, Edwards added: Whether it is a service animal required for a disability, and if so, what service it provides.

"That's it," Edwards said. "Some feel it's unfair, I could have a pet and say it's a service animal, I could say it provides whatever, and that's as far as a person can ask. That's where I think a lot of people have issues, is how do you prove that. Well, you don't have to."

The doctor's prescription wasn't enough anyway, Cruz said.

The Friday before classes started, CEA Director Sharon Bullock informed him that the school determined the animal was a companion animal, and could not come to class.

That's not a decision the institution can make, Edwards said.

"You can't make that decision over a doctor," he said.

Bullock did notify Cruz the following Monday afternoon that the dog was approved after all, after necessary information had been obtained from his doctor.

But Cruz had already been dropped from his morning class, after missing his first day. He didn't attend because he couldn't bring his service dog, he said.

"It's like telling somebody to leave their wheelchair and come to school," he said.

Cruz promptly withdrew from NIC, to avoid complications with financial aid.

Wary of returning to NIC, he hopes to see the school fined and Bullock fired, he said.

"I don't feel comfortable going back if she's still there," he said, adding that at one point she said Cruz was "advocating myself out of NIC" with his accommodation requests.

NIC spokeswoman Stacy Hudson said the school's disability support services are in accordance with the federal disabilities act.

Cruz "was granted the accommodations he requested, after presenting the appropriate documentation required, per NIC policy," Hudson stated.

Privacy restrictions prevent her from commenting more on Cruz's situation.

Bullock was out of the office until next week.

The time it takes NIC to grant special accommodation for disabled students, Hudson added, depends on how long it takes students to provide documentation verifying the disability, "and whether the accommodation requested requires additional documentation."

Edwards said he expects the OCR will soon investigate the matter.

He hopes to see the NIC staff better educated on ADA regulations as a result, he said.

"There are reasons the ADA has laws out there, to make sure people with disabilities don't have to go through what people like Tony went through," he said.

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  • local res posted at 12:59 am on Thu, Sep 27, 2012.

    local res Posts: 1164

    Maria it still comes down to the simple question of the possibility of him finding work in the area with all the negative publicity he has created.

  • LMYCDA posted at 12:41 pm on Tue, Sep 25, 2012.

    LMYCDA Posts: 1936

    Are you ok? Have you been checked by a doctor lately. If not, I would suggest making an appointment immediately. Your comments tell all here something is definitely not right.

  • Lilfarfa posted at 11:12 pm on Mon, Sep 24, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    My opinion...I am not responsible for the intonation you read into my writing. That is alllll you, honey.

  • charliek60 posted at 10:19 pm on Mon, Sep 24, 2012.

    charliek60 Posts: 204

    Don't like dogs? NIC No Smoking No Dogs No Alcohol Security guards with no guns

    Crisis? What Crisis? Supertramp

  • charliek60 posted at 10:05 pm on Mon, Sep 24, 2012.

    charliek60 Posts: 204

    what bunch of redneck hicks wowzer Crisis - What Crisis?

  • my own opinion posted at 8:05 pm on Mon, Sep 24, 2012.

    my own opinion Posts: 397

    might as well write in all caps!!!!!!!!!!!!! a lot of !!!!!!!! all your sentences yell

  • Lilfarfa posted at 1:09 pm on Mon, Sep 24, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    No, In my opinion, I am not Marla. As much as I would like to take credit for that post, I can not. Look at the writing style, the verbage, the sentence structure. We are obviously two different people.

  • NAS4AH2 posted at 6:18 pm on Sun, Sep 23, 2012.

    NAS4AH2 Posts: 71

    I don't like feeding on diabetics... Too much insulin leaves a bitter taste in my mouth.

  • my own opinion posted at 6:02 pm on Sun, Sep 23, 2012.

    my own opinion Posts: 397

    How obvious is that.

  • my own opinion posted at 6:01 pm on Sun, Sep 23, 2012.

    my own opinion Posts: 397

    lilfarta as Marla lol

  • Marla posted at 3:25 pm on Sun, Sep 23, 2012.

    Marla Posts: 1

    Thank you to those who have blasted Mr. Cruz in this article because what you have actually done is reinforce WHY laws such as the Americans with Disabilities Act that was enacted in 1990 was needed ---and that is to protect those with disabilities from ignorant BIGOTS such as yourself! It also reinforces that we can't just rely on government laws to protect the disabled, but each of us needs to advocate for those around us on a daily basis who may need our help.

    IF the investigation reveals that NIC is negligent in following the laws, then they should be held accountable. In the article, Mr. Cruz does not comment that he is planning to sue for personal damages. What he is saying is that he wants those who broke the rules to be held accountable via imposed FINES. Thank you Mr. Cruz for having the courage to take a stand! This will surely raise the awareness in our community of this issue.

    You obviously take your good health and ability to move around physically in this world for granted. Heaven forbid if any of you ever find yourself confined to a wheelchair or suffer a catostrophic illness or injury that impairs your ability to be able to provide for yourself and/or your family. I am sure you would sing a different tune then!

  • my own opinion posted at 1:11 pm on Sun, Sep 23, 2012.

    my own opinion Posts: 397


  • Lilfarfa posted at 12:33 pm on Sun, Sep 23, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    My opinion...I don't "lash" out at anyone! I do not take kindly to: anyone being judged so cruelly (like Mr. Cruz) based on an article; being told that my service dog can't do what my service dog does; or that I know nothing about what is a major part of my disability. And what is with you intentionally misspelling my screen name (yes, I did catch that).

    I'm a disability advocate and an educator, but this comment section proves one thing: You can't fix stupid! I just pray that one day you don't develop an invisible disability and meet people who have such little compassion for others.

  • my own opinion posted at 12:18 pm on Sun, Sep 23, 2012.

    my own opinion Posts: 397

    Is there a service dog for a woman with PMS? I think a service dog for PMS is right up YOUR ALLEY Lilfarta.
    They make meds that help with out of control times(THAT YOU OBVIOUSLY HAVE) you are very combative and lash out at everyone on this blog. I think you should settle down or just go somewhere and not bother the discussion if you can not be nice. Go ahead make my day I'm shaking the pork chop your turn to attack as expected. Have you been checked for rabies?

  • Joseph Jr posted at 11:04 am on Sun, Sep 23, 2012.

    Joseph Jr Posts: 512

    I am waiting for the CDA Press to update us on the RSO whose fence is apparently falling down, or has been vandalized. Is he holding meeetings at his home?

    Maybe the CDA Press could interview the parents in the neighborhood, and find out their point of view and concerns.

    Just an idea.

  • Lilfarfa posted at 10:59 am on Sun, Sep 23, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    Legal Nurse, REALLY? Since I live with a body that can not control it's blood pressure (or heart rate, or blood sugar, or temperature, etc...), I think I know a whole lot. Have you even heard of Dysautonomia? Do you know anything about it? While you OBVIOUSLY know NOTHING about service dogs, do not presume to know that I do not know how my own body works (or doesn't), and do not presume to know what my service dog does or does not do.

  • idahoguy posted at 7:03 am on Sun, Sep 23, 2012.

    idahoguy Posts: 932

    After looking up the RAP sheet I think the tax payers have wasted enough money here.

  • idahoguy posted at 6:49 am on Sun, Sep 23, 2012.

    idahoguy Posts: 932

    The AMA and other medical institutions state what is fat and obese...not me. I am not in any trouble for pointing out the over weight related issues the growing American public has. Most people are over weight. Read the stats and weep. This guy is no exception. Thus I have no compassion for fat people with medical issues.

    Get thin and trim then let us see what your physical says? Get some exercise and I do not mean lifting cake and desserts into your pie hole either.

    I was in good shape in high school and I within 10 pounds of that weight now .... 40 years later. That did not happen because it was meant to be...I had to work at it and still do.

    PC = Personal Accountability... (not me being accountable for or to you)

  • legal_nurse posted at 11:29 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    legal_nurse Posts: 6

    I know very little about service dogs, but it appears you know even less about blood pressure changes in the human body. Thanks for the info.

  • Lilfarfa posted at 10:04 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    Let me give you an example that hopefully you can understand. Many people, myself included, can tell when the weather is going to change. We can feel it. I can feel a weather front sometime 2 days before it gets here, depending on how strong it is. It actually makes me very sick, and can trigger syncope and seizures. I am more accurate than the weather man. OK...with our dogs, it's similar. Where as I am feeling a change in the barometric pressure, my dog is sensing a change in me before the event actually occurs. What is he sensing? I do not know. Well, with blood sugar, it is a scent change. But with blood pressure and seizures, we don't know. But he is sensing some change in my body that occurs directly before the event. It shouldn't be that hard to understand. Yes, they are quicker than the monitors and the meters because it is not the event itself they are picking up on and alerting to, but a change that occurs before event that the monitors don't pick up on.

  • Lilfarfa posted at 9:35 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    I suggest you do some research on medical alert dogs because you clearly have no idea. Diabetic alert dog regularly alert to blood sugar changes up to 20 minutes before it registers on the meter. My service dog does alert to blood pressure drops up to 5 minutes before it actually occurs. This early alert system allows me to take action. And, yes, his alert had been medically documented while my doctor was taking my vitals trying to set off an episode. Dogs, including my own, also alert to seizures before they occur, allowing the handler to get to a safe location before the seizure occurs. It's not "crying wolf". It is reality, and it is proven over and over again.

  • Lilfarfa posted at 9:21 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    Legal Nurse, if you are disabled under the ADA (different definition and criteria than the SSA), then you are eligible for a service dog. However, you need to know that it takes 2 years to train a service dog and they must have a rock solid temperament. The dog you described would not be a good candidate. It is a rough and frustrating process, but so worth it! 90% of all dogs that start service dog training wash out (meaning, they do not make it through the training process to work as a SD). The ability to alert to neurological conditions can not be taught, and only approx 15-20% of dogs have that ability. The ability to alert to blood sugar changes can be taught, but to be successful, must start almost from birth.

  • legal_nurse posted at 9:13 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    legal_nurse Posts: 6

    The story says, "He requested a special chair for his spinal stenosis. Cruz, a diabetic, also requested to use his service dog in class. The dog is trained to alert Cruz when his blood pressure is too low."

    The story says his dog is for his blood pressure. Medically speaking, it is hard to believe that a dog could detect a low blood sugar or pressure BEFORE it occurs or BEFORE it is monitored--dogs have amazing senses though.

    I have seen such abuse of this system that it is difficult to know when someone actually needs their pet or is just crying wolf.

  • Lilfarfa posted at 9:09 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    Legal nurse, I just reread the article and saw the sentence you are referring to where it said the dog alerts to low blood pressure. Here's the deal with SD stories, they are almost NEVER completely accurate. I suspect it was a typo and they meant to say that the dog alerts when the blood sugar is too low. Or, maybe he has an additional condition that causes his BP to drop out. The point of the story is not the details of his disability, nor is his disability anyone's business, so they aren't going to focus on that and give all the details nor are we entitled to the details.

  • legal_nurse posted at 8:55 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    legal_nurse Posts: 6

    Thanks, that helps clear up some confusion. FTR, I am partially disabled, but continue to choose to work as I am able.

  • Lilfarfa posted at 8:42 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    As for a dog detetcting drops in blood pressure, this is one of the things my service dog does. I have a neurological condition called Dysautonomia, where my autonomic nervous system does not work as well as a seizure condition. My blood pressure can randomly go from normal to 40/12 (has been medically documented) and I go down. My dog is able to alert BEFORE my blood pressure drops, I sit down, and do not faint. My care giver IS a RN. He can respond but he can not alert. My service dog has kept me from fainting more times than I am able to count.

    The dog in this story alerts to dropping blood sugar. Diabetic Alert Dogs (DADs) can alert to a dropping blood sugar BEFORE the meter registers it. They are life saving dogs, especially for the hypo unaware. While I am not diabetic, I do have reactive hypoglycemia and am hypo unaware. My dog's alert has saved my life.

    Our dogs are not a replacement for nurses, but they are an aide that without which, many of us would not be here today.

  • Lilfarfa posted at 8:34 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    Legal nurse: a service dog is a dog that is individually trained to assist their disabled handler. To have a service dog in public 3 things must be true: 1) You must be disabled per the ADA. 2) The dog must be trained to mitigate your disability. Providing comfort/emotional support is legally excluded as a task. 3) the dog must be trained to behave properly on public. A companion animal (also known as an ESA) is a pet that makes you feel better simply by being there. You must be disabled to have an ESA, however they are not allowed in non pet friendly public places except for in no pet housing and on air planes. If you are not disabled or your dog is not a service animal and you claim they are, you are breaking both federal and state law. The penalties may include fines, jail, and loss of your social security when you would otherwise be eligible.

  • legal_nurse posted at 8:19 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    legal_nurse Posts: 6

    All I can say is, "WOW"! I read through some of these comments and I have some thoughts of my own. If that was him charged with Children-Lewd Conduct with Child Under 16
    Amended: the sentence was decreased to Felony Children-Injury To Child and he was found guilty. The injury occurred in 2001 and he wasn't convicted until 2011. That probably caused some damage to the person coming forward and reliving this for ten years, while he lived free-and-clear for those same 10 years. The perpetrator fought hard, at our (taxpayers') expense, even going so far as to having a psychological evaluation and a polygraph, but did lose that case.

    I am curious about the nature of this man's disability; If he is disabled from the military, it may be related to psychological or agent orange exposure, which has been known to cause diabetes. I have cared for hundreds and hundreds of diabetics and the condition is usually NOT disabling unless that person is not caring for himself as instructed. A person may also be disabled related to sexual deviation, I believe.

    Can anyone tell me, is there a difference between a "service" animal and a "companion" animal. If so, are the laws and requirements different? I only ask because I have a deaf animal and she is definitely less anxious when she is with me. She probably lowers my blood pressure with her presence, as well. ( I would love to take her with me in stores, restaurants and on airplanes where I have to deal with stupid and rude people--she would definitely make me feel more peaceful.) I once had an interior designer come into my home and she told me her dog was a service dog that she had trained to "retrieve her pen" when she dropped it. She tried to talk me into also registering my dog, but I did what I am doing now . . . shaking my head in disbelief. There should be a legal difference between a "service" animal and a "companion" animal.

    You know, in all of my years as a nurse, I have NEVER heard of a dog that can sense when someone's blood pressure is low. Perhaps, we can start using dogs instead of nurses in the ICU and CCU at the hospital--it would be much more cost-effective than all of that useless and expensive monitoring equipment. I also am not seeing any disabling diagnoses related to hypotension, or low blood pressure in this gentleman's story, so make's me think the dog is a companion dog. Again, the law should differentiate between those who truly NEED their dog and those who just want them there for comfort.

    My last thought is on Cruz's choice of programs to study; in all of the options for programs that could make him truly employable, this is not one of them. My thought is that he is a "Jr. Lawyer", wanting to study out of interest from his own experiences in life and not to be employable. I have been employed as a Paralegal before and once can barely scrape by.

    We really do not know the nature of the fellow's disability, but it apparently includes a bad back and diabetes. Since classes are about 50 minutes and that is 10 minutes less than an episode of The Price is Right, I am guessing that he can probably sit through an entire class without a special chair. Come to think of it, if he CAN sit through a 50-minute class, he can probably get a job at Center Partner's or something if he truly wants to be employed. Center Partners would be happy to provide a special chair.

    I have had several back injuries and surgeries related to lifting obese patients in my line of work and I am frequently in pain while working; my biggest frustration is that most of my "disabled" patients are in better condition than I am. Yet, my taxes continue to support them and their "lifestyle".

  • Lilfarfa posted at 6:43 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    Oh, I'm sorry, I left out a few words..."that has a service dog". Would you like me to grammar and spell check all of YOUR posts? As a medically retired educator, I'm more than qualified, and would gladly do it.

    And how have I proven my stupidity, exactly?? I do believe I have proven yours!

  • Lilfarfa posted at 5:45 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    In my opinion... I'm ignorant? Do you even know what hypo unaware is? I don't have diabetes (or back problems), but I do have many friends who do have DISABLING diabetes. Being disabled doesn't mean we have NO life! It doesn't mean we don't have the same needs as the able bodied. You, my dear, are the ignorant one, and it appears you don't like it being shown.

  • Lilfarfa posted at 5:33 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    Inmyopinion...No, dear, I am not that guy. In fact, I'm not a guy at all. Did you miss the part where I said he will LOSE this case bc the school did nothing wrong?

    What I am is a mid 30's woman with an invisible disability (who appears to be healthy at a glance) and a service dog. What I am also is a disability advocate.

    You obviously know nothing about diabetes. Did you know it can cause you to go into renal failure, lose your limbs, and can even kill you? It can be disabling.

    I have fought the system a couple of times over my service dog, both times winning. And, before you go there, when you file a law suit over a civil rights violation (which mine were), you do not get any monetary gain. All you get is your civil rights enforced and the yahoos educated and possibly fined (but the fine goes to the government, not you). Fighting the system doesn't make me any less disabled. It makes me unwilling to give up my rights.

  • my own opinion posted at 4:43 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    my own opinion Posts: 397

    lilfart give it up you are this guy it is obvious. lots of people out there with the same issues if he is well enough to go to school and fight with the system i say he is well enough to work! put some more food in your piehole and teach your dog some manners.

  • Lilfarfa posted at 2:17 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    The comments on his appearance or about his disability are completely uncalled for. I don't care if you know someone with diabetes who isn't disabled. There are varying degrees of the disease (as there are of back problems). What if he is Type 1 and hypo unaware?

    Someone commented about the school requiring proof that the dog was actually a service dog. They can't. They can require medical documentation that the handler is disabled and requires a service dog, but nothing on the dog itself. There has been nothing reported that even suggests the school stepped outside the bounds of the law.

    As a disabled service dog handler with an invisible disability, I do understand the daily struggles we deal with, often due to the ignorance of others. I do not blame the gentleman in this case as he likely does not know. I DO blame the idiot feeding him incorrect legal information and steering him towards a law suit. While most SD lawsuits are valid, even one invalid one hurts our community.

  • LTRLTR posted at 12:39 pm on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    LTRLTR Posts: 1171

    idahoguy: Thank the Press for saving your bacon.

  • DeNiles posted at 11:06 am on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    DeNiles Posts: 2450

    Here in CdA the manager for the Disabilities Action Center (DAC) is Selena Vasquez. I fully expect that his organization is well intentioned. Everyone needs to understand that people do not plan on becoming disabled so they are not familiar with related laws and avenues they can access to improve their circumstances. So organizations like DAC are very important and very necessary resources for the disabled.

    Give DAC the time to reinvestigate their part in this episode. Who knows maybe they are intentionally working to alter the existing existing regulations? I doubt that. DAC needs to clarify exactly how they're related to this case and provide a formal position statement on the action.

    As with most CdA Press articles this one is very short on depth of facts and long on vague innuendo. And no doubt the CdA Press will not provide much additional information to flesh-out the whole story. Readers will be left to their own assumptions and Mr Cruz to the consequences of ever having talked with a reporter from a (ahem) newspaper.

  • NAS4AH2 posted at 9:58 am on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    NAS4AH2 Posts: 71

    Looks like the dog is excited for this lawsuit too!

  • Joseph Jr posted at 9:08 am on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Joseph Jr Posts: 512

  • Joseph Jr posted at 8:58 am on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Joseph Jr Posts: 512


    TAKE THE TIME, TO READ ALL THE POSTS BELOW BEFORE COMMENTING. This article is just one of many examples of irresponsible journalism by the CDA PRESS.

    Quote (below) by Chief Many Blankets posted at 8:42 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Posts: 19

    "LTRLTR.....I looked this guy up in Idaho's repository like you suggested. OMG!!! "

  • Joseph Jr posted at 8:45 am on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Joseph Jr Posts: 512


    Clearly you are a liberal. You automatically assumed the 4 posters who irritate you, are jobless, fat, and so on...

    Are you sure they are "sirs?" Had you considered they may be retired? Maybe they own their own businesses, and can access the interenet whenever they wish.

    Their thoughts and comments disagree with yours, so you rally the commenters to "IGNORE them." Do you have issues with control? You are acting like a 16 year old, high school girl. Not an adult.

  • Joseph Jr posted at 8:34 am on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Joseph Jr Posts: 512

    Anyone reading the comments? This comment is worthy of reading.

    Quote by: Lilfarfa posted at 11:45 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Posts: 2

    "I am a disabled service dog handler and disability advocate. While many of the comments are offensive and show nothing but ignorance, in this particular case, this guy will lose his law suit and the school was correct.

    Schools, employers, housing, and in some cases air lines can ask for medical documentation that generally has to be less than a year old. So, the school did nothing wrong and followed the law. A school is not a place of public accommodation and falls under a different part of the ADA."

  • idahoguy posted at 8:22 am on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    idahoguy Posts: 932

    Looks like I got deleted for judging the appearance of this guy. The press publishes his picture and then says we can not comment on said picture? Still say he needs a bull dog not a retriever.

  • Born in Bonners posted at 8:22 am on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    Born in Bonners Posts: 69

    I'd like to know who Virgil Edwards boss is. Does anyone know how to find out that information? Why is he so hel bent on steering Cruz to push for a lawsuit against the college? I googled his name and he writes whiny letters to the editor wanting them to make Tubbs Hill wheel chair accessible. He says he is disabled and alludes to the fact that he is a disabled veteran but never comes out and says it so I doubt that he is. He just wants people to think he is. Does anyone know if he's a disable vet?
    The people at the college were only doing their jobs asking for documentation proving the dog was a real service animal. Can you imagine if every student down there wanted to bring their dog to school? I'd bet anything that Cruz's dog is NOT a trained service animal. If it was then he wouldn't have anything to worry about. I'm reading between the lines here. Cruz is on social security disability because he has diabetes and a bad back. Hmmmm. I have friends with both of those ailments and they still work. Then he got a chunk of financial aid money to go back to school at 58 to become a paralegal. How absurd. Then someone had the gall to ask him what his dog did so he threw a temper tantrum and quit before he even started. Then Virgil Edwards goaded him on to 'Sue the College!' I want to find out who Virgil's boss is.

  • idahoguy posted at 8:20 am on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    idahoguy Posts: 932

    Thanks. I will look it up. Checking up on people is something I do and am hardly ever surprised they fails to mention so much to the Press as well as this rag fails to ask much.

  • LTRLTR posted at 7:45 am on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    LTRLTR Posts: 1171


    You can do your own research at, however I would not post your findings here.

  • milburnschmidt posted at 7:27 am on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    milburnschmidt Posts: 1161

    Interesting comments and information submitted below. Supposing Mr Cruz settles his difficulties with his pursuit of his quest for a education and better job one has to wonder whether a law office who championed his cause would turn around and hire him at his age,physical problems and tendency to sue those who do not accomadate him to his expectations. It would probably be poetic justice and a test of all the noble rhetoric these attys and supporters come up with these days. So far I havent seen any of his champions here offer him a job or assistance which says a lot.

  • DeNiles posted at 7:04 am on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    DeNiles Posts: 2450

    Lilfarfa........ Thanks for your knowledgeable input. We are in agreement. Now we need to hear from Mr. Virgil Edwards, the independent living advocate at our local Disabilities Action Center. Mr. Edwards has errantly bolstered Cruzs' misunderstandings and helped lead him to pursue this lawsuit.

    As you seem to understand there are a constellation of real and serious issues affecting the disabled. To waste time and money on such a facetious claim is most unfortunate. Hopefully the process can be withdrawn and hopefully Mr. Cruz will take proper advantage of his opportunities and improve his personal circumstances.

  • JoeIdaho posted at 6:14 am on Sat, Sep 22, 2012.

    JoeIdaho Posts: 2841

    "asiseeit", you said:
    "What’s killing American democracy is the demagogue approach to dialoging the issues"
    The President of these United States, every day, uses class warfare to enhance his position. Much like Hitler, he uuses a group of people as "the enemy", and his followers pounce on the bandwagon. His group? Business, and "the rich". We all KNOW that "taxing the rich" or "making them pay their fair share" won't fix our issues, but it doesn't stop the moron in chief from attacking people

    "Dare I use the words tolerance and compromise to find balance between ideologies that would keep us more centered?"
    My problem is that the politicians I have supported have "compromised" witht he left so much thatthey have indeed overspent, by a mile, and have accepted the left's "ideologies" so much that as a society, we are stupid. At airports, we KNOW that people of middle eastern areas ARE the ones to fear; in order to assuage YOUR ideology, we have Grandmas strip searched. "Compromise? Does this speak about Obamacare? Or; was that a "compromise"? They RAM it through; nancy Pelosi doesn't even KNOW what's in it, and they all cheer?

    "We have become so short sighted by our inability to see beyond what our pundits feed us"
    That's YOUR assumption of what others think.
    Here's what I KNOW:
    The economy is a disaster, the Federal Reserve is BORROWING 30-40 BILLION dollars a month to give to Banks that are cash rich. 28 of our Embassies have been attacked over the last 10 days, and fear on both sides of the aisles by every day Americans trounces everything else. We all KNOW that hyperinflation is on the way/here, and (supposedly) 48% of Americans think we are on the right track, and think Obama is doing a "good job".
    I don;t need a pundit to tell me any of that; I have Clients that call me every week in dire straights, losing homes, bankruptcies, all of it, in tears. No Fox News or MSNBC needed.

  • Lilfarfa posted at 11:55 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    I will address some comments.

    No, service dogs do not have to be fixed. Mine is not. He is not "horned out" either. Him not being altered does not harm his ability to work in the slightest. Also, proven service dogs are often bred to produce puppies more likely to be good service dogs. How do you breed a fixed dog? I'm not saying this service dog is going to be bred, but just a point. The decision to alter or not is left to the handler, as it should be.

    To the commenter that stated that service dogs should have to wear a "federal sticker", why? So YOU know? It's none of your business. Most of us do vest but there are valid reason not to. For example, my service dog just had surgery to remove a benign tumor. He's fine, he's cleared to work, but can not wear his harness for 2 weeks, until the stitches are removed, due to the location. Am I supposed to be house bound for 2 weeks just bc my dog can not wear his harness?

    Really...If you don't have a service dog, if you don't live in our world, then you don't know, and you have no business saying what we should or should not have to do. The next time you think, "I thought service dogs...", your probably wrong!

  • Lilfarfa posted at 11:45 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Lilfarfa Posts: 16

    I am a disabled service dog handler and disability advocate. While many of the comments are offensive and show nothing but ignorance, in this particular case, this guy will lose his law suit and the school was correct.

    Schools, employers, housing, and in some cases air lines can ask for medical documentation that generally has to be less than a year old. So, the school did nothing wrong and followed the law. A school is not a place of public accommodation and falls under a different part of the ADA.

  • AsISeeIt posted at 11:44 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    AsISeeIt Posts: 28

    What’s killing American democracy is the demagogue approach to dialoging the issues. Dare I use the words tolerance and compromise to find balance between ideologies that would keep us more centered? We have become so short sighted by our inability to see beyond what our pundits feed us.

  • JoeIdaho posted at 11:24 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    JoeIdaho Posts: 2841

    Bonners, just to make this as simple as I can for you; conservatives rarely sue over any form of discrimination. It's a liberal practice, and that's why I rail against them, because as a group, their PRIMARY goal is to teach all of us how we are all somehow "victims".
    This is too bad, too, because Liberals, a word that USED to be fairly noble, have been completely corrupted by their party into consistently working the attitude that they are "owed", and that everyone is "entitled", when in reality, no one is either.
    I'd BE a liberal if their policies weren't so anti-American, anti-Freedom, and socialist.
    In order, what do Libs think the biggest problems in Americas are?
    (1) Rich people not paying their fair share
    (2) Someone's rights being violated, specifically minorities, because there is NO such thing as discrimination against whites or Christians.
    (3) Government not spending enough money
    (4) Controlling what American eat and ALL of their habits, from driving to
    (5) Controlling the planet, what we use in terms of natural resources
    (6) Confirming that ALL businesses & corporations are evil.

    Conservatives like me want more jobs, more manufacturing here, and Freedom.
    Guess we're different.
    We want Freedom, Liberals want chains.

  • JoeIdaho posted at 11:14 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    JoeIdaho Posts: 2841

    Born in Bonners, if you are a liberal, than welcome to the GROUP of people who sue the most, and believe that society owes them consistently, and who think that socialism is GOOD.
    (SO sorry to offend you...but your practices offend me.)

    "downtown", who cares what yuou think about someone's "insides".
    The point is very simple; 58 year old man goes into a school, doesn;t get the "special" treatment he thinks he deserves, and sues all of us. I'm fed up with it, and TYPICALLY, you, most probable from the left (I'm sure) complain about the "bloggers" instead of the issue.
    Hmmmm.......just THINK about the parallells:
    American Ambassador is murdered overseas, our government had warnng 3 (days) before it happened & let it anyways, and what is CNN & ABC, CBS & NBC's story?
    Romney's reaction to it.

    JUST like yours. For a liberal the issue is never the practical, pragmatic side of any issue, it's always about the side issues, and why? Because Libs do NOT have a leg to stand on, so they have to manufacture one.
    Folks, learn which posters here are either communists or RINOS, (who are communist sympathizers).
    Then, treat them according to what they want for America.

  • local res posted at 9:13 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    local res Posts: 1164

    The owners of service animals should be required to display a federal sticker such like a disability placard on the animal.

  • local res posted at 9:10 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    local res Posts: 1164

    Of the 49.7 million how many are disabled due to bad choices ie: alcoholism, substance abuse, the mentally ill, the developmentally delayed who can not function to obtain employment. And finnally what percentage are the plain LAZY that have found the gravy train?

  • downtowncda posted at 8:41 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    downtowncda Posts: 364

    There are 4 people on this comment page that comment on EVERYTHING that comes up on this website. My first take on this was "hey, there the regular 4 posters go again, "get a job, he's fat and so on.. I thought, well he's fat on the outside, but these 4 constant discontented bloggers are so ugly on the inside it's pitiful - so, which would you rather have fat or "rotten the core ugly people".

    And, thru the months, these same 4 guys daily throw out cheap shots at everything in print. 'WHY CAN THEY DO THIS ALL DAY LONG? THEY NEED TO GET A LIFE AND GET A JOB!!!.

    YOU 4 SIRS - ARE OBVIOUS JOKES OF SOCIETY. Folks, please note these posters names and choose to IGNORE them and any inflammatory comments they make every day.

  • Born in Bonners posted at 6:17 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Born in Bonners Posts: 69

    Now Joe, I was agreeing with you up until now. But you had to go turn this whole thing into a political rant. Plus you just called me an Idiot. Is that how you make friends and influence people? By denigrating those you don't even know? Now that's stupid.

  • JoeIdaho posted at 4:59 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    JoeIdaho Posts: 2841

    As a matter of FACT, he is a deadbeat. He's gettign free money to attend one of our schools, and since it doesn't cater to him well enough, he feels fit to sue that taxpayer.

    Liberals are poison to America, and Democrats don't comprehend what it means when America is being attacked all over the world, our economic system is failing, and there is no leadership. For them, it means a 100% positive approval rating.

    That's because they are idiots.

  • AsISeeIt posted at 4:11 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    AsISeeIt Posts: 28

    ...must be one of those 47%'ers... the dog too. Dog-gone dead beats. Conservative compasionism at its best.

  • JoeIdaho posted at 2:56 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    JoeIdaho Posts: 2841

    Get lost, koala.
    The guy is OBVIOUSLY trying to rip off the taxpayers.

  • ancientemplar posted at 2:51 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    ancientemplar Posts: 1187

    Chief, middle name or DOB

  • Rationale posted at 2:37 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Rationale Posts: 1974

    I'm not done talking. Like I said, there are two issues crossing each other: accommodations and ADA.

    The school has a right to ask for proof for accommodations.

    Then there's the other University and their NIC's the same?

    This is not as cut and dry as people may think.

  • Rationale posted at 2:35 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Rationale Posts: 1974

    By the same token, how do you know he WAS born diabetic?

    Just asking.

    And read my posts, I have not mentioned one thing about his appearance, so don't even go there!

  • ItsmefrmID59 posted at 2:23 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    ItsmefrmID59 Posts: 15


    if this person was seeing impaired would you feel differently about the Service Dog or texts books in Braille being paid for with "our" money? Do you feel an interpreter for the hearing impaired distracting in classs?

    How many of us have used or our children qualify for tuition help through FASFA?

    What if you, a family member or friend should become seriously hurt or ill and needs to be retrained to enable them to work? Are you going to have the same attitude about the ADA or be thankful there are laws in place to help the disabled lead productive lives?

  • cda_boy posted at 1:54 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    cda_boy Posts: 30

    Mister D, thank you! I am extremely allergic to dogs and what happens if Mr. Cruz sets his tax payer paid chair next to me? Am I forced to leave class and withdraw from NIC? Maybe when I go into anaphylactic shock his puppy can lick me back to health? Laws for the very few have a grave impact on the many. ADA has gotten way too out of control.

  • Born in Bonners posted at 1:26 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Born in Bonners Posts: 69

    See? Caius is throwing the word 'lawsuit' around and everyone stops talking. He must be the guy's attorney. I emailed the Press and asked them to check to see if it is the same guy. I suggest CDA Mom you might ask them too. And anyone else here. I think people have the right to know what happens with their tax dollars and this person is suing NIC (translation...Us) and I want to know if he is one and the same.

  • Suzanna posted at 1:00 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Suzanna Posts: 20

    Or you can just go to the courthouse on 10/31 and see if it's him....

  • CDA_Mom posted at 12:52 pm on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    CDA_Mom Posts: 31

    They really should check. If it's not him, I think they have a moral (if not legal) obligation to clarify, seeing as it's being brought up on their website.

  • Chief Many Blankets posted at 11:55 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Chief Many Blankets Posts: 19

    Caius...Is there anyway to know for sure about the Repository thing? How would one find out for sure? Can the Press check on that?

  • CaiusCosades posted at 11:46 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    CaiusCosades Posts: 380

    I'd be careful about throwing around what you're seeing in the repository. If it's not him, you don't want this guy to hit you with a slander suit.

    Also, for all of you saying that he should lose weight because he's diabetic. The article does not state whether it's type I or type II. There is no way any of you can say that his weight caused the disease. How do you all know that he wasn't born with it?

  • Chief Many Blankets posted at 11:15 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Chief Many Blankets Posts: 19

    CDA Mom...He shares a name, and county residence and the same age.

  • LTRLTR posted at 11:10 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    LTRLTR Posts: 1171

    OALA: With the exception of your very first sentence, you brought up some good points.

    You apparently have personal knowledge that Mr. Cruz's disabilities are extensive as court records suggest and that additional education as a paralegal is not reasonable.

    It sounds like the system has failed Mr. Cruz by leading him down paths that he will never be able to handle.

  • Rationale posted at 11:02 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Rationale Posts: 1974


    You make valid points...similar to what I have said. I think this whole thing is getting blown out of proportion. Anthony probably does qualify.

    However, Anthony also had over a month to comply with NIC's requests. Remember, this is crossing 2 lines here: educational accommodations and ADA. For educational accommodations, verification is an absolute requirement for a student to receive assistance.

    This is going to be interesting...

  • CDA_Mom posted at 10:59 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    CDA_Mom Posts: 31

    No kidding.

  • Chief Many Blankets posted at 10:59 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Chief Many Blankets Posts: 19

    Caius....You must be Anthony's attorney or Anthony himself. Go look him up on the Idaho Repository's page and get back to me if you still think he is a swell guy and NIC is on a power trip.

    Anyone can buy a service animal vest off the internet.

  • CDA_Mom posted at 10:58 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    CDA_Mom Posts: 31

    LTRLTR suggested that people search the Idaho Supreme Court Data Repository for more information on Mr. Cruz's credibility. I just did and discovered that he shares a name and county residence (Kootenai) with the defendant in case number CR-2009-0020184 (convicted of felony lewd conduct with a child under 16). If it's the same guy, he's the wrong poster boy for the rights of the disabled, regardless of whether NIC messed up or not. It's hard to believe someone's story when they've demonstrated the ability to manipulate and lie in such a heinous manner.

    If he's not the same guy, he's got a very unfortunate name and I think it would be worth the Press' time to print a clarification so that he isn't mistaken for this felon as this lawsuit goes forward.

  • Rationale posted at 10:57 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Rationale Posts: 1974


    You didn't read my post, so perhaps you are the knucklehead. Look at the the way the other University complies with ADA...sounds eerily like NIC's policy.

    Anthony and his dog merely had to do what was asked. Playing devil's advocate for a moment, is it possible he can't get a doctor to claim the dog is a necessity anymore?

    And three year old prescriptions aren't valid. Go to a pharmacy with a 3 year old prescription and try to get it filled.

    Asking for verification is not a violation of anybody's rights. Otherwise, I'm going to claim I'm disabled tomorrow, and when they ask for verification, I'm going to say the government is violating my rights!

  • OALA posted at 10:38 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    OALA Posts: 6

    Wow, look at all the haters... The direct personal attacks on this man and his dog are ridiculous and definitely off subject. Anyone who know this duo knows that Anthony's disabilities extend far beyond spinal stenosis and diabetes, and that De-O-Ge (the dog) is probably one of the best behaved canines on the planet. What should be focused on are the questions that cases like this bring to light.
    Like the ridiculous broadening of the definition of "therapy dog" and people getting rx's from their md's for "companion animals". These people are usually on "disability" (another term that's definition has become ridiculously lax), living off the government teat in some fashion and more importantly unable to properly care for their "service animal". Although in this case De-O-Ge truly is a therapy dog, there are many that DO NOT pass the muster for this distinguishment. And before anyone gets down on me, I have dealings with these circumstances daily.
    Another issue: If someone is on welfare/disability/etc and wants to improve themselves to the point they can be self-sufficient and get off our dime, more power to them. My question is why didn't the case worker (or whatever they call the person that manages these individuals) help Anthony set a more reasonable goal than paralegal?
    The school should have the right (and responsibility) to verify that individuals are not bringing their "pets" to school. They are distracting, people have severe allergies, and not many of them are behaved enough to be in a classroom.
    And then there are the lawyers that take up these cases. What a frivolous waste of resources...

  • CaiusCosades posted at 10:25 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    CaiusCosades Posts: 380

    These knuckle heads down at NIC, I wonder if they play Benny Hill while they work. Sounds like Sharon is on a power trip and is going to get herself and her institution in some serious trouble all for what? To bully a guy with a disability? This is disgusting NIC staff should be ashamed of themselves!

  • 986crazy posted at 10:07 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    986crazy Posts: 410

    Why can't he take the course via distance education (online)? Even if the course isn't offered at NIC, he could take it elsewhere and transfer the credit in. This is clearly a cash grab.

  • Rationale posted at 9:52 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Rationale Posts: 1974


    Under the law, allergies and fear of dogs are not reasons for exception. If a student at the college is allergic, the government specifically states as their solution that the allergic student be placed at the opposite side of the room (yeah, like that will stop the sneezing), or they be placed in separate rooms!

    The law as written is, indeed, is the idea that asking for verification is somehow discriminatory.

    In fact, lawyers point out that they do not carry documentation on them for their disability....perhaps they SHOULD as a requirement!

  • 986crazy posted at 9:41 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    986crazy Posts: 410

    one evening we went to Olive Garden in CDA. While we were waiting to be seated a woman who appeared to be in her 60's was pushing a pink baby carriage. I peeked in expecting to see a cute little granddaughter..IT WAS A LITTLE DOG DRESSED IN PINK! Imagine sitting near this animal while eating and be subjected to it licking itself, or dropping a load in its carriage?

    1.What is this world coming to where people can take their animals into a restaurant?
    2. Service Animal laws are being abused, heavily, and I'm outraged by it!

  • 986crazy posted at 9:37 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    986crazy Posts: 410

    misterd brings up an excellent point: "Do the classmates that are allergic to dog hair have any rights? Whose rights trump?"
    Where I work a fellow employee was bringing in her dog, which I'm allergic to. The dog is nearly deaf and she yells at it constantly (like it can hear her!). She didn't like the fact that our employer told her to leave her dog (a yellow lab) at home. She had it certified as a service animal (yah, it's deaf) to help keep her blood pressure down as she suffered a stroke a few years ago. 1. she yells at it. 2. it can't hear. 3. HOW IS THIS KEEPING HER BLOOD PRESSURE DOWN? and what are my rights? The solution was they moved my office to another area, which worked. But it makes me crazy how she manipulated the system so she could bring her dog to work!

  • Rationale posted at 9:20 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Rationale Posts: 1974

    This is from another University: "On the student side, the individual must meet the essential eligibility requirements for admission to the university or participation in programs or activities sponsored or provided by the university. If necessary, the university must make reasonable accommodations or modifications to rules, policies or practices, and/or provide auxiliary aids and services, that will allow the disabled individual to participate.

    The decision as to whether or not a disability exists is usually made by a physician or other qualified specialist. The university may require documentation to substantiate a disability. If the university finds that the documentation is not adequate to support the existence of a disability or that the documentation does not suggest that the disability is limiting in the work or school environment in question, the university may require additional documentation or the university may deny the requested accommodation."

    Doesn't look like NIC broke any laws, if the above is the rule.

    Besides, since when is verification considered illegal? If it is, the we need to change these laws immediately. The onus should be on the disabled person to provide documentation, not on a business to guess who may or may not be disabled! Asking for verification is only fair when someone is asking for this kind of accommodation.

    Funny, you can't put a child inn school without immunization verification! Is that a violation if the child is disabled?

  • LTRLTR posted at 9:10 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    LTRLTR Posts: 1171

    He seems to have other motives and a very different thought process.

  • Chief Many Blankets posted at 8:42 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Chief Many Blankets Posts: 19

    LTRLTR.....I looked this guy up in Idaho's repository like you suggested. OMG!!!

  • Chief Many Blankets posted at 8:27 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Chief Many Blankets Posts: 19

    Can you imagine if all 4,000 students and staff at NIC decided to bring their 'service animals' to school? The college DOES have the right to ask 'What does this animal do?'
    This guy is totally working the system. He's on disability and financial aid and thinks the world owes him every thing. His sense of entitlement would stun a Pharaoh. Now he plans on getting rich suing the college. It's like anything, the ADA started out to be a good idea and then people like Cruz twist it all up and ruin it for everyone.

  • Joseph Jr posted at 8:20 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Joseph Jr Posts: 512

    ADA and Federal Fair Housing: (Please correct if this information is not right) It is my understanding, that if a person with a disability requests to rent a property, and needs to make structural or other changes such as lowered cabinets, etc., they may do so at their own expense. They are required to return the property to its original condition when they complete their rental agreement. Can anyone (a lawyer) confirm this?

    I believe that ADA does not relieve a disabled person from their obligation to repair or replace anything they or their service animal has destroyed or ruined. I believe they are responsible and should be held responsible for their actions and the actions of their animals.

    I am beginning to wonder, if some disabled people use their legitimate disability to abuse other people, and then hide behind attorney's they do not have to pay for.

  • DeNiles posted at 8:13 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    DeNiles Posts: 2450

    Old Hayden.... Read the link provided in the article (for comprehension). You're wrong and Cruz is wrong.

    What is so tough about getting a recent doctors certification anyway? If Cruz wanted to attend this college so badly why is he not attending classes? He got his clearance. WE were going to pay for his classes. WE were going to accommodate all of his special needs at OUR expense. WE did not say PLEASE loudly enough or bend over fast enough to make him comfortable? Even though he got ALL of what he wanted he now intends to cause as much expense and trouble as possible. Well he now has his notoriety and it is not one I would have volunteered for.

  • LTRLTR posted at 8:00 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    LTRLTR Posts: 1171

    Seach Idaho Supreme Court Data Repository and everyone will have their answer to his actions.

  • idahoguy posted at 7:55 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    idahoguy Posts: 932

    Is that Cruz's waist pack in the doggies mouth? Is the doggie carrying all the Dunking Doe-nuts in the waist pack for Cruz to munch on to maintain his obese frame? No leash...Leash laws?

    Just asking Cruz..... Now drop down and give me twenty.

  • downtowncda posted at 7:50 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    downtowncda Posts: 364

    Sorry cereal!

  • downtowncda posted at 7:46 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    downtowncda Posts: 364

    I recently worked retail in Midtown. We had many people come in with service dogs. We also had many people come in with all types of untrained dogs (including aggressive pit bulls) and claimed they were service dogs. It was obvious these guys were lying.

    One dog pooped on the floor in the back of the store. Another made a "puddle" in a shopping cart with clothing items that were not yet purchased. At Safeway, I witnessed a dog that I know for sure is a legit service dog lift his leg on several serial boxes that were displayed on a bottom shelf. (Guess he didn't like corn flakes).

    I just wish today's service dogs were trained as well as the service dogs of yesteryear. I also wanted to tell the guys with the pit bulls to get the heck out of the store too.....

  • milburnschmidt posted at 7:40 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    milburnschmidt Posts: 1161

    According to the 2000 census 49.7 million americans identified them selves has having some sort of permanent disability. thats one in five now with no job prospects millions of americans are seeking SSI disability benefits . Mr Cruz makes no mention of alternative methods of monitoring his condition and his prospects at learning a paralegal trade and finding a job are astronomica and next to none. He will drain every financial source availablel. AS millions of americans struggle waiting for employers to hire this man is a example of what they face if they pen up their work force. When you read that legally blind individuals sue to become airline pilots or other lawsuits filed under this act you have to laugh at the problems the act has made. Even failure to pass police tests is not a reason to deny a job to a individual if he failed because of a lack of education . Anyone thinking of hiring Mr cruz should read this article and see what is in store. No wonder our country is broke because of good intentions gone bad. It would be a great story if he was younger and able to find a new profession and make himself self supportable but it aint going to happen. While he might be in line with the law as written more than a few have called for this law to be rewritten to bring some restrictions badly needed to prevent abuses like this and other cases.

  • mister d posted at 7:30 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    mister d Posts: 1531

    Do the classmates that are allergic to dog hair have any rights? Whose rights trump? I have little sympathy for this individual in this situation.

  • JoeIdaho posted at 7:29 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    JoeIdaho Posts: 2841

    Got it.
    "Hi, I'm 58 years old, and it's time for a new profession. I am on disability, for sure, and am already fairly dependant on the rest of you to carry my weight. Sp; I decide to go to school, and when they don't do everything I want, I'll just sue, costing all of YOU more money, and hey; while I'm at it, I'll maybe reap some financial benefots for me!!!"

    old hayden, your comments woudl make me think that you're just like cruz, trying to MOOCH off of the rest of us.

    And as a final note, as an employer, I woudl NEVER hire cruz if I knew anything about this. He is a lawsuit waiting to happen. This whole thing is a farce, and wrong.

  • meanie posted at 7:23 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    meanie Posts: 80

    Any service dog that is trained to do such a task must wear the proper service attire. It must display that it is a service dog when in a public building. Also for the reason, to make sure that others do not touch your dog while working. And when a service dog is needed at all times , and you need the dog by your side at all times, you must show quilfied papers for the dog. It keeps those who have animals that are not qualified in public places . Really people lets not attack his disability, Let's help him in getting his act together and not leach off the system. And just because your dog has a CGC , doesn't make it a service dog either. LOL

  • SamuelStanding posted at 7:20 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    SamuelStanding Posts: 529

    I'm a pirate, argh! And this here parrot is my service animal -Not let me pass!

  • Old Hayden posted at 7:10 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Old Hayden Posts: 32

    NIC and commenters are wrong! The federal law specifically states that "when it is not obvious what service an animal provides, only limited inquiries are allowed. Staff may ask two questions: (1) is the dog a service animal required because of a disability, and (2) what work or task has the dog been trained to perform. Staff cannot ask about the person’s disability, require medical documentation, require a special identification card or training documentation for the dog, or ask that the dog demonstrate its ability to perform the work or task."

  • DeNiles posted at 6:58 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    DeNiles Posts: 2450

    It may not be as clear cut as Cruz indicates. There are federal rules limiting how much documentation is required to accommodate a service animal. But they are not set in stone and federal variances do exist. The idea is that these people and their service dogs should have access to go into public places and businesses. They are NOT required to show a recent prescription simply to eat in a restaurant or attend a concert. But if they want to fly on a plane they will. Under certain Homeland Security laws these people are required to demonstrate the current legal validity of their animals. Every American is subject to greater scrutiny under such laws and the disabled are not exempted.

    NIC indicates they were following federal guidelines and I suspect they know what they're doing. I do have to wonder about Cruz and his motivations. Considering his age and the nature of his disability I gotta wonder why our gov't is even paying for him to attend college. His dog is with him to alert him of low blood pressure events. Those are not just minor episodes of transient hypotension. Those are events severe enough to lead to loss of consciousness and all of the dangers associated with fainting.
    Certainly Cruz needs his dog and he needs his dog to be with him. But is it wise for him to physically attend college courses putting his own safety in peril and perhaps the safety of others? If Cruz should faint he's likely to drop like a log and that can occur anytime and anywhere.

    Now Cruz seems pretty intent to punish the system because he feels it did not go far enough to accommodate him. I hope that he reflects upon all of the things the system DOES provide him and demonstrates a weensy bit more gratitude.

    BTW all service dogs should carry with them (as in -on their collar) service dog registration certificates. And getting a certificate requires a doctors prescription and a veterinarian certification of animal training. Even then - if the user is planning to fly anywhere a new and recent doctors prescription will be required to board any plane in these United States.

  • haydenator posted at 6:54 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    haydenator Posts: 200

    I though I would be the minority here, I was wrong. Thank god. You want me (the tax payer) to accommodate you the disabled. Your disability being diabetes. I am supposed to spend money and go out of my way yet your not even required to put down the donuts? LOSE THE WEIGHT!! Geez bad back = overweight! Diabetes = overweight. Seems like a pretty good scam!!

  • NoName posted at 6:40 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    NoName Posts: 253

    Like it or not, Mr. Cruz played by the established rules/laws and NIC staff took it upon themselves escalating the criteria above existing standards. While I don't have a dog in this fight I do have first hand experience with local government making up its own rules/laws to suit themselves.

  • idahoguy posted at 6:20 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    idahoguy Posts: 932

    Hey Cruz,

    I got an idea.

    How about you start out with some PC, personal accountability. First buy and provide your own dumb chair and stop expecting others to do it for you. Next get a life on the dog issue. Just buy a blood pressure monitor device and check yourself before class. If you feel stranger than you are now acting then sample yourself in class. Sit is the back as well. It is closer to the door so you can leave without bothering others trying to learn.

    You dog will die and it could die suddenly so does that mean you will die suddenly as well? If so tough luck...but I really doubt that is the case. Are you expecting to be allowed by all the world to drag your dog along with you in you life and career. You going to sue and make money every time you can not bring your dog along?

    At almost 60 starting school to do hopefully get a job in the paralegal studies field and being well over weight with serious medical issues to boot it seems more like getting money to sit in school is a way to make ends meet. What are the well studied actual chances of you ever getting and holding down a job to pay us tax payers back for our investment into you? Education has to seen as a profitable investment not a right.

    I can hardly wait until you get an interview and slide your list or wants and demands across the table. Better get use to hearing ..."I will have our people call your people, next please"

  • Joseph Jr posted at 6:13 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Joseph Jr Posts: 512

    Quote: "That's it," Edwards said. "Some feel it's unfair, I could have a pet and say it's a service animal, I could say it provides whatever, and that's as far as a person can ask. That's where I think a lot of people have issues, is how do you prove that. Well, you don't have to."

    Mr. Edwards,

    Your own statement acknowledges a very real potential for people without disabilities, to abuse laws meant to protect people with disabilities. In fact, it seems you are flaunting the potential for abuse because of the way the laws are written. Your statement seems to be saying anyone can claim they have a disability, and need a service animal or other accomodations, without providing reasonable proof of true and sincere need, to those they request accomodations from. Mr. Cruz has every right to stand up against those who will not provide reasonable accomodation. But, where are the protections for those being asked to provide accomodations?

    It seems Mr.Cruz is able to commit to attending classes at a university/college, with the goal to become a paralegal. I would sure like to know if Mr. Cruz is currently employed. What future accomodations will an employer be required to provide, once Mr.Cruz receives his degree?

    Question: Can anyone apply for government educational grants (taxpayer money), and claim they are disabled, without providing proof? Just curious. Thanks in advance.

  • Jeffrey Wherley posted at 6:08 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Jeffrey Wherley Posts: 3969

    Your on the right track, but moving way to fast. Service animals are available for allot of purpose. Unlike what this story says, This guys Diabetic dog, can smell an unhealthy Blood Sugar Level (not pressure) and warns him to take his remedy. These dogs are amazing, but they should be certified by Trainers and Doctors, and if the owner doesn't have a certification with them if asked, they should be allowed to be refused entry anywhere.

    This is the first large breed Diabetic dog I have seen or heard of, because they escalate their warning activities, (nudging, whimpering, barking and more) until the condition subsides. That excitement level in a large breed I always figured would preclude them, but I guess I was wrong.

  • voxpop posted at 5:25 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    voxpop Posts: 738

    Service animals are turning into something similar to medical MJ. Far too many people think they can flaunt the original purpose for their own benefit. I really doubt that all anyone needs to do is claim they have a "disability" and their pet is a "service animal" and therefore can take said animal anywhere. If that were the case granny would be taking spot on the airplane whenever she visits the grandkids. The law needs to be changes so we're back to where only seeing eye dogs qualify.

  • Jeffrey Wherley posted at 2:55 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Jeffrey Wherley Posts: 3969

    Oh, don't get me wrong Diabetic service Dogs are life savers and a wondrous new tool, but that is not the issue.

  • Jeffrey Wherley posted at 2:48 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    Jeffrey Wherley Posts: 3969

    Wary of returning to NIC, he hopes to see the school fined and Bullock fired, he said.
    "I don't feel comfortable going back if she's still there," he said, adding that at one point she said Cruz was "advocating myself out of NIC" with his accommodation requests.

    Now that is what I call a person with revolving GOALS. 1st he wants an education but when simple questions arise, he easily drops that goal and picks up a vendible of payback to the questioner as an EASIER Goal. He won't even have to work at that one, Virgil will do it all for him, while Cruz can go back home and collect welfare and sing the meaningless song to him, "Mary had a little lamb"

    Although Diabetic Service Animals are helpful, they aren't something as easily recognized as see eye dogs, which is what these laws were created for. I bet some would like me to get a service Zebra to bite me in the ask, when I become hyper-insensitive. Should NIC not be able to question that too? I am sure many of the HSP people on these pages would/will testify to my condition.

    The ADA Laws are outdated and need changed, they have become a lawyers honey hole, and societies tool for creating Division, which is the opposite of what the laws were meant to do. The Disabled should be harassed no more or less than what anyone else would be, to do the same things, not be given Carte Blanche. How much Education would happen if I were left unquestioned bringing my Zebra to class?

  • longbow posted at 2:41 am on Fri, Sep 21, 2012.

    longbow Posts: 12

    Here we go. Is he really interested in "educating" those at NIC regarding the ADA requirements for service dogs, or is this "complaint" the first step in yet another shake-down for monetary gain? He withdrew because he didn't want to jeopardize financial aid status?

    So, if I read this article correctly, all I need do is say that my terrier is a "service dog" trained to assist in my "disability" and there are no further questions that can be asked by the school. Wow, that's better than having him bark in the back yard all day while I'm away.

    It's no wonder this Country is going to h*** in a hand basket. That law sounds like something drafted in California.

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