That is, unless your child has an intellectual disability. Because apparently, according to the “safety rules” on a bounce house product by Ninja Jump at the ZBounce at an area mall, having an intellectual disability renders your child incapable of joining their non-intellectually disabled peers from doing the one thing your child with an intellectual disability CAN do on the same level as their peers.
Play and laughter are 2 things ALL children do, regardless of their abilities. For many with intellectual disabilities, especially autism, jumping and bouncing are wonderful sensory activities that provide much needed calm and order to a very disorganized system.
So when your child with an intellectual disability gets the birthday invite to the bounce house, you are THRILLED. Because your child with an intellectual disability doesn’t always get a lot of birthday invites. Even if they did, sometimes the party plans are so overstimulating that it would be more detrimental to your child to go than to miss out.
But this one, this one will be awesome.
Until you get to the bounce house and see THIS:
I am pretty sure that sign is not ADA friendly. The American’s with Disabilities Act, for those that are not acronym familiar.
You know, the act that indicates persons with disabilities cannot be discriminated against.
Pretty sure that sign is all kinds of discriminating against kids with disabilities.
ZBounce states they are required by Maryland regulations to post the safety rules that are provided by the manufacturer. ZBounce has said they will “obscure” the offending safety rule and not prevent children with disabilities from bouncing in their bounce house. The manufacturer, per a post I saw, feels it is not discriminating.
I am not sure anyone has shown them a definition of “discrimination”. Or a copy of the ADA. ZBounce’s PR people seem to be working overtime and answering everyone’s angry comments on their Facebook page with promises to rectify this situation, but the damage to their reputation is taking a hit.
This sign has poked some momma bears. And those momma bears have woken up angry.
Clearly we still have some work to do to ensure our children are treated fairly. Clearly there is still a lot of education and awareness needed for intellectual disabilities.
If this sign gets you “all fired up”, like my sister-in-law Tricia, and my friend Jenni, who brought this to my attention, let it be known.
I am not a fan of leaving the “I am never using your company again! You suck!” comment. But providing companies, that seemingly don’t understand what “ADA” or “discrimination” mean, education on the matter, or suggestions for improving their practices, those comments go a long way and can be impetus for change. Otherwise you will just waken THEIR momma bear (e.g. holy crap my business is going under and I will not do anything to keep that from happening). Now you just get a bunch of angry people yelling at one another.
ZBounce has a facebook page here. Leave them a comment- but please refrain from letting your ire get the best of you. Ninja Jump can be contacted at 1800-888-8148.
From a personal standpoint: This is outrageous. I have worked with kids with all different levels of intellectual and physical disabilities for over 25 years. While some severely medically fragile and physically disabled children may be prevented from bouncing, there is absolutely no reason, except ignorance, for a child with an intellectual disability to not be able to bounce, jump, laugh, or play on a bounce house.
Hopefully these companies will rectify this situation. If not, I know a group of very angry momma bears headed their way.
Have a great crazy day.