By: Sara Lundquist
The saga or the war rages on. I thought I would update what happened since the last post about the ongoing issue with Carmike Theaters and Captions.
I mentioned in my last blog post that we were going to have an undercover mission with a friend of mine and her husband. They went to the theater knowing they did not offer captions but just wanted to see what the reaction would be when they asked about them. What happened next just shocked me. My friend did not talk just used sign language and her husband did the talking. They asked if captions were available and THEY DO HAVE CAPTIONS and provided my friend with a Captiview device. I was shocked and even more confused after all of this. I am very glad that my friend got to enjoy the movie and understand all of it. To make matters even more confusing it was the same manager that helped me helped her.
I called the theater again trying to get a hold of a manager. I had no luck doing this earlier. I actually got the manager and it was the one I talked to. He apologized that he didn’t give me captions. Then he went on to say that a “Full Deaf” woman came in today and I gave her captions. She couldn’t even talk so she was full deaf and needed them. It was thank you for your apology and now go stick your foot in your mouth. I told him I wrote a letter to the editor and he was aware of this, I guess the paper contacted the theater. I also told him I was waiting for a response from the theater and he told me he got my emails but just didn’t know what to do with them. That same night I received an email from a district manager asking some questions about the day, time and person we talked to. I responded right away to the email. A step forward I was contacted??
Next morning I get alerted that my letter to the editor was published. Had to run out on my lunch break and pick up the paper. Not everyday you are published in the paper, well maybe if you write for the paper. Here is a copy of what was written and published:
We are in a day in age where there is equal equality to all…but is there? I was at the Kandi Carmike Movie Theater this past weekend with my husband. We were going to a movie on his birthday. I happen to be hard of hearing and I asked if there were a captioning device I might use for the movie so I could understand the dialog. I was given the response from a manager that those devices take lots of paperwork, signatures and time so we don’t bother with them. This really upset my husband and I. Paperwork is such a pain that we can discriminate an entire group of people from the movies. A simple no would have worked but to go on that it is a pain and burdensome was unneeded. I guess my money doesn’t need to be spent at the Carmike theater anymore. November 21, 2014 the HLAA (Hearing Loss Association of America) had a landmark deal with Theater Owners of America that come 2015 closed captioning for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing and Visual Description for the Visually Impaired will be required of all theaters. I look forward to this day, and I look forward to the day when the pain of paperwork and time doesn’t discriminate a group of people. We wouldn’t think of having a theater not wheelchair accessible, not all disabilities are visible.
I have not heard anything from the theater until today. I was contacted by CCAC (Collaborative for Communication Access via Captioning). After corresponding with CCAC they sent an email to the district manager and copied me on the email and response. The email was sent and I thought AHHH now we wait. A whopping 5 minutes later we have a response from the district manager that they have captioning and are in the law complete with pictures of the Captiview devices and the headphones. CCAC sent another email back to them thanking them for their speedy response but alerting them as it is nice they have the devices they are denying them to certain patrons if they don’t look deaf enough. They asked the theater to issue an apology. This email hasn’t been answered.
So again we wait…..