An irreverent Wall Street Blog
by Bill Singer
Join BrokeAndBroker blog on Facebook  Follow the BrokeAndBroker blog on Twitter  Connect with BrokeAndBroker on LinkedIn  Join Bill Singer on Google+  Subscribe to RSS Feed

Feds File Historic ADA Case Against NYC Restaurant
Written: October 16, 2012

Preet Bharara

Preet Bharara (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In September 2011, the United States Attorney (“USA”) Office for the Southern District of New York(“SDNY”) announced that it was engaged in the  Manhattan Restaurants American with Disabilities Act of 1990 (“ADA”) Compliance Initiative. At that time, restaurant owners and operators of the 2011 Zagat Guide’s “most popular” New York City restaurants were asked to complete a government Survey Form, indicating their restaurant’s accessibility. Subsequently, Department of Justice investigators conducted on-site inspections of some establishments to confirm ADA compliance.

Owners and operators of restaurants found to be non-compliant were given the option of entering into a Voluntary Compliance Agreement; those found to be engaging in a pattern or practice of discrimination, or that failed to enter into Voluntary Compliance Agreements faced a federal civil lawsuit and/or penalties, including monetary damages and civil fines. A number of restaurants with deficiencies voluntarily pursued remedial measures to bring their business into ADA compliance.

A Rosa By Anyother Name?

On October 15, 2012, the SDNY USA announce that its Civil Rights Unit was filing its first lawsuit under the Manhattan Restaurants ADA Compliance Initiative.  READ the full-text Complaint. The defendants are


the owners and operators of the three Manhattan locations of the popular Rosa Mexicano restaurant chain.

NOTE: The assertions in the civil Complaint are merely allegations and the defendants are entitled to the presumption of innocence unless and until prove guilty in a court of law.

According to the federal Complaint, Rosa Mexicano restaurant locations: 61 Columbus Avenue (“Rosa Mexicano Lincoln Center”), 1063 First Avenue (“Rosa Mexicano First Avenue”), and 9 East 18th Street (“Rosa Mexicano Union Square”), have numerous ADA violations pertaining to their entrances, waiting areas, bar areas, dining areas, and restrooms. Pointedly, the Lincoln Center Rosa Mexicano allegedly lacked an accessible main entrance, and its “alternate entrance” was deemed non-compliant. Further, the chain’s First Avenue establishment was cited for non-ADA compliant entrance and for its three restrooms. Finally, the Union Square address was cited for non-compliant main and “alternate” entrances,  and restrooms.

By way of example, under Paragarph 14 of the Complaint, are these allegations:

(b) The route from the Columbus Avenue entrance to the upper level of the restaurant (where the toilet rooms are located) is via a flight of stairs. Patrons who cannot use the stairs are directed out of the restaurant and around the corner to an adjacent building on 62nd Street the Harmony Atrium, through which there is a route to the upper level of the restaurant. There is no directional signage at the Columbus Avenue entrance indicating the route to the Harmony Atrium alternate entrance . . .

(c) The elevator hoistway entrances in the Harmony Atrium do not have raised and Braille floor designations on both jambs . . .

(d) The designated accessible entrances along the route from the Harmony Atrium to the upper level of the restaurant are not identified with the International Symbol of Accessibility . . .

SDNY USA Preet Bharara said:

When it comes to restaurants, New York City is arguably the world’s crown jewel, and the purpose of this initiative is to ensure that individuals with disabilities have equal access to its offerings. With today’s lawsuit alleging multiple violations of the ADA at three Rosa Mexicano locations in the City, that is exactly what we are doing. As alleged, neither the ADA, nor the warnings from this Office were enough to convince these restaurants to comply with the law, and the goal of this lawsuit is to see that they finally do.

Bill Singer’s Comment

Preet Bharara is a pretty busy guy –  many folks, including myself, think he’s as close to the Sheriff of Wall Street as there is today. Regardless of my frequently voiced concerns about some of the cases that his office has brought, I commend him for at least taking his job seriously and being about the only cop out there who seems to be seriously policing the securities industry.  As I have often noted, he’s the best U.S. Attorney of my lifetime. Of course, best doesn’t mean perfect.

In first reading about the case that is the subject of this column, I initially responded with an OMG – are you serious? Given all the seemingly important criminal issues on the SDNY’s plate, this problem struck me as something better suited for a local prosecutor or for private civil lawsuits.  After all, theBig Apple is now the home to a ban on the sale of sodas over 16 ounces — you want to learn about robust debate, go ask some New Yawkers about that one!

Whatever your political leaning – liberal, libertarian, conservative, anarchist – I’ll leave it to your sensibilities to parse today’s case as you will; however, there is no doubt that there are many disabled citizens who daily face hurdles that simply do not need to be there and should be eliminated. If this case addresses those problems, great; if you feel otherwise, I understand.

No sermons from me. No potshots. I’m simply telling you what the facts are.

And before you’re too quick to support or argue with me, READ these prior “Street Sweeper” columns on ADA issues:

To File Complaints

The SDNY USA press release states:

Since President George H.W. Bush signed the ADA into law in 1990, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York has taken a leading role in bringing numerous New York City institutions into compliance with the ADA regulations. They include Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center, the Metropolitan Opera, Yankee Stadium, Madison Square Garden, the Apollo Theater, the Puck Building, the Shubert Theaters, the Rainbow Room, and Radio City Music Hall.

To file a complaint alleging that a restaurant or any other place of public accommodation within the Southern District of New York is not accessible to persons with disabilities, use the Civil Rights Complaint Form available on the United States Attorney’s Office’s website, Complaints should be sent to:

U.S. Attorney’s Office, Southern District of New York
86 Chambers Street, 3rd Floor
New York, New York, 10007
Attention: Chief, Civil Rights Unit


Previous Entries
July 3, 2015
On Sunday July 5th, Greeks will be going to the polls -- at least as of the writing of this column -- and voting whether to accept the terms of the pr... Read On
July 2, 2015
Offered for your consideration today in the Blog is a thought piece. On one side, we have the goose: An individual human being conv... Read On
July 1, 2015
If you're going to promise a Wall Street regulator that you will fix a problem, you better make certain -- in fact, you better make damn cer... Read On
June 30, 2015
In "SEC Commissioner Gallagher Rages Against The Dying Light In Two Dissents" (, June 18, 2015), I noted that:After four years ... Read On
June 30, 2015
Stockbroker, Compliance, Legal, and Regulatory JobsEmployment Page Jobs#wallstreetjobs @brokeandbrokerNOTICE TO EMPLOYERS: Brok... Read On
June 29, 2015
On June 26, 2015, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority ("FINRA") published this somewhat unusual and intriguing press release:FINRA Supports NA... Read On Job Search

Related Topics
Tag Cloud
Internet FINRA Bear Stearns Bloomberg SEC NASD NYSE Money Laundering Due Diligence Waiver Forbes China Broy Woody Allen Madoff NAC NPR Marketplace Stanford UBS Ketchum Antitrust NASDAQ RRBDLAW Schapiro Bill Singer BrokerAndBroker USERRA Morgan Keegan Arbitration Counterclaim Khuzami BrokeAndBroker Aleynikov Goldman Sachs brokeandbroker Promissory Note U4 Bill SInger EFL CFTC Huffington Post Flash Crash arbitration RBC Ponzi Affinity Fraud Wachovia Criminal Raymond James Expungement Fraud Securities Fraud Outside Business Activity Registered Rep Magazine FOREX FBI Banc of America Pro Se PCAOB Supreme Court Morgan Stanley Smith Barney E*Trade Margin email Galleon Penson U5 Defamation Protocol Wells Fargo Punitive Damages Citigroup Merrill Lynch ARS Employee Forgivable Loan Street Legal Morgan Stanley AWC Fidelity Bankruptcy Broke And Broker HFT David Sobel Day Trading Ameriprise Commissions Spouse Schwab Commission CRD Kenneth Starr IRS CNBC Complaint ATM Skimming Hacking Phishing Malware Naskovets Poteroba Koval Lincoln Financial Selling Away Outside Business Activities Rakoff 2nd Circuit Second Circuit IRA 401k Forgery Tax Email Netschi Moore Whistleblower Street Sweeper Countrywide Tran Bharara Facebook Online Severance Bonus Eligibility Rule TD Ameritrade Hedge Fund SAC 1099 Smith Barney Lehman Brothers SIPC IC3 Scottrade AIG Lehman JPMorgan Chase Hertz Insider Trading Bank of America Department of Justice Elles Bribe Auction Rate Securities Raiding Spam Edward Jones Medicare Diabetes Dow Schumer Thain Walter Bid Rigging Real Estate Discrimination Wall Street Statutory Disqualification Form U4 Form U5 Indictment Boyland DOJ Corruption bill singer FTC Do Not Call FINRA Arbitration Costa Rica Settlement LIBOR Varney Plea Rule 8210 Eligibility RRBDlaw 8210 Appeal Fowler LPL Johnson Cellphone US Airways JPM BrokeandBroker Reg D MSSB Vault Loan SunTrust Discovery Employment Rosenthal Recruiting Lawyer Trading Platform JP Morgan Employment Tuesday Wrongful Termination Bank Guarantee WaMu Solicitation REIT Martin Credit Cards Rule 3050 Away Account Credit Repair PN Advisor Placement Group Fifth Amendment Forex Mortgage Private Placement Moon CGMI Failure to Supervise Merrill Anderson Exam Lee Borrowing Tax Lien Charity Conversion Oppenheimer Wedbush Felony Misdemeanor Expenses ING Lien OTR Estate Jobs Florida Credit Card Elderly Flash Drive Annuity Expense Reimbursement FNMA BrokeAndBroke TIC DWI Promissory Notes Suitability Will POA Power of Attorney Casino NSF MF Global Counterfeit Preet Bharara Corzine Hacker Deferred Compensation RIA Prison Disclosure NASAA Aguilar FCPA Subway Testimony Identity Theft Gold Dell Bar Injunction Bank Deutsche Bank Hospital Retirement Due Process God HSBC Private Placements Eric Stein Wire Fraud FINOP CCO Compliance Audit Test Examination Cheating Joshua Brown Backstage Wall Street Obstruction of Justice Reuters Retaliation Variable Annuity Arbitraiton Outside Account Options Telephone Wine Series 7 Social Media ADA Pacifico Non-Prosecution Agreement Confirm Tax Fraud OBA Equity Indexed Annuities EIA Disability MetLife Continuing Education OIP Tax Liens Willful CE Unregistered Impersonation Annuities BBVA Business Expenses ETF JOBS Act Mail Fraud Parking Variable Annuities Signatures BitTorrent Impersonator Wire Transfer Wire Crowdfunding Nasdaq Away Accounts WSP Laptop Dodd Frank Checks RMBS AML PST Solicited Unsolicited Congress SRO Password Wife Discretion Non-Solicitation Restaurant Commodities Private Securities Transaction Offer of Settlement Money Market employment jobs Great Recession Chase Investment Services Arrest Barclays Liens Obamacare Failure To Supervise Apple Time And Price T&P Willfully Husband Letter of Authorization LOA Sexism Debit Card Knight Practice Sale Unfair Competition Signature Judgments Data Undisclosed Settlement Trainee Fee Trust Laser Side Bar Mattera Female Sales Assistant Kennedy Charge Commodities Fraud Sexist NML Argentina Embezzlement Silver Investor Alert Evidence Judgment Bank Fraud Deceased Bill Singer BrokeAndBroker TSSB OHO Leveraged ETF Mary Jo White Trustee FINRA AWC Motion To Dismiss Frumento Conspiracy 6th Circuit Proctor Commissioner Stein 401(k) Rule 3040 Customer Files Class Action Beneficiary NYAG Schneiderman 11th Circuit Insurance Gallagher White Self Regulation Short Sale Compromise Website Rule 2010 Check TRO Supervision Vacatur Remand SDNY Rule 12206 BrokeAndBroker Bill Singer Piwowar Stifel Rule 1122 Article V signature Confidential Inside Information Reg SP VA Leveraged ETFs Regulation SP Fees Cease And Desist Customer Rule 3270 Rule 3240 Annual Compliance Questionnaire OWB 2Cir Red Flags Payroll Stockbrokers ALJ Cybercrime Loans BrokerCheck Altered Records
Email Bill Singer Connect with Bill Singer on Facebook Follow Bill Singer on Twitter Link up with Bill Singer on LinkedIn Join Bill Singer on Google+