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  1. #1

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    Gac/das- a different point of view?

    Abuse debates aside,

    It appears that much of the focus on the GAC system, both from Disney and from able bodies guests, is on the use of a wheelchair and the needs due to the chair.

    Many of those who needed the GAC are those with life altering HEALTH conditions, or issues not directly related to a wheel chair. Disney, and park guests would do well to remember that the chair may just be a device that some use, but not the reason that the person needs or receives assistance.

    IMO, the new system will only be of benefit to those who can play the " run around game" to use it that way.

    Illness=loss of stamina. But Disney is requiring a person to go and register when they get to the park, then go and ask for a special pass EVERY single time for what ever (not all) rides that offer it. Then it only works as a fastpast and the person STILL has to go and get in a long line. REALLY? Is this best for the ill? (For the single parent of an Autistic child? or for..)

    Energy for many with health conditions is like a clicking clock as well as a pedometer. Each step, And/or each minute drains energy. The system also adds stress of trying to plan the ride pass around where you may be , or how you might be feeling...etc. This creates MORE STRESS on an ill person. Some people can only ride a handful of rides and they may be across the park from each other. I may be well enough for Splash Mountain now, while I am here for it, but not in a hour. If so, I will not get to ride Splash at all.

    The old system allowed people to ride what they could, when they could, while conserving energy, not crisscrossing the park, or having to guess how they will feel later. ( Which is an ever changing thing with some illnesses.) That is why it worked.

    Some people in other threads asked how " those " people managed in real life with out a GAC? THEY DON"T. Someone mentioned standing in line at Mc Donalds. They don't stand in line for an hour at Mc Donalds, they don't go shopping like you do. Many go without doing or getting the things you or I take for granted.

    For many GAC users a trip to Disney is a HUGE investment in energy and health, but it is done because life is so hard that a place to escape, even a brief escape, from their health reality, is the one thing in life to still look forward to.
    You don't see the tears of pain back in the room once the adrenalin of escapism wears off. (By the way, depression is a hush-hush little devil that also accompanies many with health issues.)


    IN SUMMARY:

    My opinion is that Disney appears to just want the whole assistance issue to go away. The don't want the backlash of just pulling all assistance, so, instead they have designed a system that gives so little, and requires so much, that people may not want to try to use it to cheat. It appears that the "pixy dust" given to help some have a less pain filled day, or a fighting chance to see more attractions in a day, is being taken away from many who truly need it.

    Those with little energy will now have to use much more of it sitting in a line, and will see much less of Disney, possible making the monetary expense too much for the little amount of time they get to spend in the park. It is like telling a healthy person, you can visit, but can now only visit 4 attractions in a day.

    Congratulations to the majority. Your line position will be less challenged. Have fun when you get home from Disney, no therapy sessions, no shoe box of drugs or ...

    Go shopping, have a day with out pain, play with your healthy child that can focus and wait... and GOD forbid anyone else ever gets anything special that you do not get. Those that lose out will not be on the nightly news.

  2. #2

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    Re: Gac/das- a different point of view?

    So, as you're in favor of maintaining the current situation unchanged;

    What do you recommend Disney should do in the face of the current PR barrage on Craigslist and other GAC "tour" sellers? What should they do for the people NOT needing a GAC who clog the entrance to Pirates to "stay in character" and not use a non-GAC line even when it's easier?

    The current situation is not ideal. Given the attention being paid to it by mainstream press on a national level, this is a major headache for Disney that needs to be solved. Inaction means they've sided with the abusers of the system - the people who made this change needed in the first place.
    Credibility is to be sought for. Credulity is not. Sadly the latter is our normal human state.

  3. #3

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    Re: Gac/das- a different point of view?

    Quote Originally Posted by BogLurch View Post
    So, as you're in favor of maintaining the current situation unchanged;

    What do you recommend Disney should do in the face of the current PR barrage on Craigslist and other GAC "tour" sellers? What should they do for the people NOT needing a GAC who clog the entrance to Pirates to "stay in character" and not use a non-GAC line even when it's easier?

    The current situation is not ideal. Given the attention being paid to it by mainstream press on a national level, this is a major headache for Disney that needs to be solved. Inaction means they've sided with the abusers of the system - the people who made this change needed in the first place.

    The first thing I noticed about your post is the complete lack of concern or caring about those that will be hurt in the change. Your area of concern appears to be Disney's PR headache, and your Pirates line being clogged. That is not my concern, so I doubt we will ever agree on the type of change that needs to happen.

    Do you favor Disney method ridding itself of the headache, even at the cost of many of those who need other assistance?

    Disney had other ways to manage the PR and even the abuse.

    You do realize that the same person(s) that got the GAC pass and used it for a tour group, could in theory do the exact same thing under this new system? Actually it would work better for someone like that. They are healthy enough to bounce between rides and have fastpass runners. Not something that you will likely see happening with those who have health issues.


    I never said that Disney should do nothing. They could begin limiting the abuse by limiting the number of people that can go in line with a GAC user. There are other things that can be done without hurting those in need. You can't stop all abuse under any system. Should we remove all fast pass tickets? People were abusing that system too.

    One thing I do agree with. The new system will probably get great press by healthy people since most have no clue ( or don't care) about how it is impacting anyone except for themselves.

    You just watch, this new system is not going to make a significant change to a healthy persons touring time, but it sure will for those with limited energy/health issues.

  4. #4

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    Re: Gac/das- a different point of view?

    Quote Originally Posted by just me View Post
    I never said that Disney should do nothing. They could begin limiting the abuse by limiting the number of people that can go in line with a GAC user. There are other things that can be done without hurting those in need. You can't stop all abuse under any system. Should we remove all fast pass tickets? People were abusing that system too.
    How could someone possibly be abusing the FP system? No one can get an advantage over anyone else, with return times now enforced there is no way to abuse it.
    Favorite Ride: Tower of Terror

  5. #5

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    Re: Gac/das- a different point of view?

    Quote Originally Posted by Quentin View Post
    How could someone possibly be abusing the FP system? No one can get an advantage over anyone else, with return times now enforced there is no way to abuse it.
    I think that is exactly what Justme meant - until recently, people were abusing the system by coming back outside of their return windows. Disney fixed that without eliminating the FP system by enforcing the existing rules.
    Merida looks like this. Not a Barbie doll!

  6. #6

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    Re: Gac/das- a different point of view?

    Quote Originally Posted by Malina View Post
    I think that is exactly what Justme meant - until recently, people were abusing the system by coming back outside of their return windows. Disney fixed that without eliminating the FP system by enforcing the existing rules.
    Ah, I see I read that wrong my mistake.
    Favorite Ride: Tower of Terror

  7. #7

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    Re: Gac/das- a different point of view?

    Quote Originally Posted by just me View Post
    Abuse debates aside,

    It appears that much of the focus on the GAC system, both from Disney and from able bodies guests, is on the use of a wheelchair and the needs due to the chair.

    Many of those who needed the GAC are those with life altering HEALTH conditions, or issues not directly related to a wheel chair. Disney, and park guests would do well to remember that the chair may just be a device that some use, but not the reason that the person needs or receives assistance.

    IMO, the new system will only be of benefit to those who can play the " run around game" to use it that way.

    Illness=loss of stamina. But Disney is requiring a person to go and register when they get to the park, then go and ask for a special pass EVERY single time for what ever (not all) rides that offer it. Then it only works as a fastpast and the person STILL has to go and get in a long line. REALLY? Is this best for the ill? (For the single parent of an Autistic child? or for..)

    Energy for many with health conditions is like a clicking clock as well as a pedometer. Each step, And/or each minute drains energy. The system also adds stress of trying to plan the ride pass around where you may be , or how you might be feeling...etc. This creates MORE STRESS on an ill person. Some people can only ride a handful of rides and they may be across the park from each other. I may be well enough for Splash Mountain now, while I am here for it, but not in a hour. If so, I will not get to ride Splash at all.

    The old system allowed people to ride what they could, when they could, while conserving energy, not crisscrossing the park, or having to guess how they will feel later. ( Which is an ever changing thing with some illnesses.) That is why it worked.

    Some people in other threads asked how " those " people managed in real life with out a GAC? THEY DON"T. Someone mentioned standing in line at Mc Donalds. They don't stand in line for an hour at Mc Donalds, they don't go shopping like you do. Many go without doing or getting the things you or I take for granted.

    For many GAC users a trip to Disney is a HUGE investment in energy and health, but it is done because life is so hard that a place to escape, even a brief escape, from their health reality, is the one thing in life to still look forward to.
    You don't see the tears of pain back in the room once the adrenalin of escapism wears off. (By the way, depression is a hush-hush little devil that also accompanies many with health issues.)


    IN SUMMARY:

    My opinion is that Disney appears to just want the whole assistance issue to go away. The don't want the backlash of just pulling all assistance, so, instead they have designed a system that gives so little, and requires so much, that people may not want to try to use it to cheat. It appears that the "pixy dust" given to help some have a less pain filled day, or a fighting chance to see more attractions in a day, is being taken away from many who truly need it.

    Those with little energy will now have to use much more of it sitting in a line, and will see much less of Disney, possible making the monetary expense too much for the little amount of time they get to spend in the park. It is like telling a healthy person, you can visit, but can now only visit 4 attractions in a day.

    Congratulations to the majority. Your line position will be less challenged. Have fun when you get home from Disney, no therapy sessions, no shoe box of drugs or ...

    Go shopping, have a day with out pain, play with your healthy child that can focus and wait... and GOD forbid anyone else ever gets anything special that you do not get. Those that lose out will not be on the nightly news.
    THANK YOU!

    You explained the situation perfectly. As I have pointed using my condition as an example in the main post about this issue that there is often a reason a person is in a wheelchair and that may be a "hidden" condition, I look normal I can stand (for a a minute or so anyways) and walk (unsteadily for a hundred feet or so) but thats where normalcy ends I am so low on energy that I can only visit the part using my electric wheelchair for not more than 3.5 hrs at a time even as soon as I arrive my hands and arms are already tired from controling the scooter, of course I cant drive and have to driven there.

    When everyone who is healthy goes to Disneyland they enter the turnstiles and happily go off and have fun. I have to go straight to the city hall guest services and use the side ramp this creates stress immediately as there is always a long line out the doorn and down the stairs of people for the most part wanting birthday buttons so I am forced to "cut in line" since I cant use the stairs this creates a scene everytime last time i want the CM behind the counter even yelled out to me that I had to wait my turn there was a line I pointed out there was no way I could get in that line as I cant use the stairs etc etc then I have to tell my personal medical limitations every time I go to the park.

    I simply cannot get into a regular line even if it can accomodate a wheelchair I dont have the strength to wait for more than 15 mins and not in the sun I have to avoid sun exposure it actually causes me pain. And due to my central nervous system failing I may have to rush to a restroom at any time with little warning imagine that happening in a the middle of a zig zaging long line with metal rails and hundreds of people blocking you and your in a wheelchair. Even as it is I usually can only go on one major attraction per visit. I cant even go on the fast or violent rides that have long lines anyways.

    Btw just driving over all the uneven ground surfaces they put in in the 90's rattles the chair so much its painful and it even caused the battery connections to come loosse and stop the chair!

    Any increased Hassles like having to go to a kiosk for permission to go on one ride only at a time and then wait maybe hours for that time to occur (they propose it to be based on regular line time not fast pass time). they availalbe time might be passed my 3.5 hr daily limit.

    and yess other than my visits to my doctors the only time I get to leave my home is to go to disneyland and it is the only time I can really get outdoors in the fresh air and try and enjoy life the best I can.

    But it has been becoming more and more stressfull and unpleasant to go that aftger 50 yrears of going I have let my AP expire and i am not planning on getting another.

    sorry for the misspellings its very hard for me to type nowadays...

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  8. #8

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    Re: Gac/das- a different point of view?

    I guess, to inspire a dialogue here, I'd ask what changes you'd make to the current GAC system to curb the abuse currently going on? Or what changes to DAS you'd make to make the system work better to address yours and others needs?

    One change I could see being liked would be increasing the amount of places one can obtain a DAS from. Just using Guest Relations at both parks is too limiting, so maybe a second location on Main Street (maybe by the Disney Gallery) would help. Also having a couple booths outside the gates, maybe by ticketing, would also help this. Similarly, adding more kiosks than the currently planned 4 for DL and 3 for DCA would be helpful (although since we don't know how big the kiosks are/how many people will be staffed there yet, I'm not as willing to commit to this idea).

  9. #9

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    Re: Gac/das- a different point of view?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nirya View Post
    I guess, to inspire a dialogue here, I'd ask what changes you'd make to the current GAC system to curb the abuse currently going on? Or what changes to DAS you'd make to make the system work better to address yours and others needs?

    One change I could see being liked would be increasing the amount of places one can obtain a DAS from. Just using Guest Relations at both parks is too limiting, so maybe a second location on Main Street (maybe by the Disney Gallery) would help. Also having a couple booths outside the gates, maybe by ticketing, would also help this. Similarly, adding more kiosks than the currently planned 4 for DL and 3 for DCA would be helpful (although since we don't know how big the kiosks are/how many people will be staffed there yet, I'm not as willing to commit to this idea).
    Some things I would do:

    1. Limit GACs to two weeks, the way they are now.
    2. Get the names and photos of everyone on the GAC (they already do this with APs) and require that the GAC holder be present at the rides (nobody gets to ride without them).
    3. Limit the number of people that can be added to one. That's how it's done in theaters; you can have one companion with you in the accessible seating.
    4. Allow people to use Fastpasses as their GAC return time on rides where that is available (ie, you have a GAC. You get a Fastpass. You use your FP at the appropriate time but go in the alternative entrance. They did this at Star Tours when I visited with my Mom, who had an ECV).
    5. Work on making more rides fully accessible.
    6. Limit the green light stamps, but continue to have the 5-7 different other stamp for GACs, since different disabled have different needs.
    7. On rides without Fastpasses, or where FPs aren't available anymore, allow CMs at the exits of each ride to issue return time cards.
    Merida looks like this. Not a Barbie doll!

  10. #10

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    Re: Gac/das- a different point of view?

    There's just no good solution for Disney in this. What they were doing before was ripe for abuse. What they are doing to try to curb said abuse will cause inconvenience to the people who can most use the benefit. Darned if you do, darned if you don't. I don't run a theme park, but if I did, I would have sent some process improvement folks around before I let TDA come up with a solution. I bet they could have tweaked the old system somehow to resolve the abuse while keeping up the level of benefit it had or close to it. I don't envy anybody in this conundrum.

  11. #11

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    Re: Gac/das- a different point of view?

    Quote Originally Posted by just me View Post
    Abuse debates aside,


    IN SUMMARY:

    My opinion is that Disney appears to just want the whole assistance issue to go away. The don't want the backlash of just pulling all assistance, so, instead they have designed a system that gives so little, and requires so much, that people may not want to try to use it to cheat. It appears that the "pixy dust" given to help some have a less pain filled day, or a fighting chance to see more attractions in a day, is being taken away from many who truly need it.

    Those with little energy will now have to use much more of it sitting in a line, and will see much less of Disney, possible making the monetary expense too much for the little amount of time they get to spend in the park. It is like telling a healthy person, you can visit, but can now only visit 4 attractions in a day.

    Congratulations to the majority. Your line position will be less challenged. Have fun when you get home from Disney, no therapy sessions, no shoe box of drugs or ...

    Go shopping, have a day with out pain, play with your healthy child that can focus and wait... and GOD forbid anyone else ever gets anything special that you do not get. Those that lose out will not be on the nightly news.
    So your telling me it's a 'right' of the disabled to be first in line all the time? Could you point out the section of the ADA that states that?

  12. #12

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    Re: Gac/das- a different point of view?

    Quote Originally Posted by Malina View Post
    Some things I would do:

    1. Limit GACs to two weeks, the way they are now.
    2. Get the names and photos of everyone on the GAC (they already do this with APs) and require that the GAC holder be present at the rides (nobody gets to ride without them).
    3. Limit the number of people that can be added to one. That's how it's done in theaters; you can have one companion with you in the accessible seating.
    4. Allow people to use Fastpasses as their GAC return time on rides where that is available (ie, you have a GAC. You get a Fastpass. You use your FP at the appropriate time but go in the alternative entrance. They did this at Star Tours when I visited with my Mom, who had an ECV).
    5. Work on making more rides fully accessible.
    6. Limit the green light stamps, but continue to have the 5-7 different other stamp for GACs, since different disabled have different needs.
    7. On rides without Fastpasses, or where FPs aren't available anymore, allow CMs at the exits of each ride to issue return time cards.
    I like all of your ideas except number six. The only way to remove overwhelming abuse would be to remove the green light stamp completely. Otherwise people will continue to lie about whatever condition necessary so they can get the green light stamp. As long as unrestricted FP entry is an option, abuse will be rampant.
    Favorite Ride: Tower of Terror

  13. #13

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    Re: Gac/das- a different point of view?

    I have a feeling what will happen is that this new system will go live and then when enough people complain about it, it will quietly go back to the way it was before. I remember when my mom first started using the GAC pass she had to have a letter from her doctor to get the pass. If that is something that could help curb abusers, then they should bring that back but of course there will never be a "perfect" system and those that abused the old system will find a way to abuse the new one.
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  14. #14

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    Re: Gac/das- a different point of view?

    Quote Originally Posted by Quentin View Post
    I like all of your ideas except number six. The only way to remove overwhelming abuse would be to remove the green light stamp completely. Otherwise people will continue to lie about whatever condition necessary so they can get the green light stamp. As long as unrestricted FP entry is an option, abuse will be rampant.
    I agree that the green light is problematic - but I think the issue with that is that there are always going to be people who truly need it. At the least I would like to see the program with Make a Wish green light lanyards expanded to other specific organizations or hospitals if it's not available directly at the park.

    And I do think that if the green light stamp were severely limited and monitored - very stringent guidelines, one guest, tracking, names of guests - it would become very quickly apparent who's abusing it and they could be blacklisted.
    Last edited by Malina; 09-20-2013 at 10:58 PM.
    Merida looks like this. Not a Barbie doll!

  15. #15

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    Re: Gac/das- a different point of view?

    Quote Originally Posted by Malina View Post
    I agree that the green light is problematic - but I think the issue with that is that there are always going to be people who truly need it.At the least I would like to see the program with Make a Wish green light lanyards expanded to other specific organizations or hospitals if it's not available directly at the park.
    There really is no perfect solution. It's tricky.

    Quote Originally Posted by Helios77 View Post
    I have a feeling what will happen is that this new system will go live and then when enough people complain about it, it will quietly go back to the way it was before. I remember when my mom first started using the GAC pass she had to have a letter from her doctor to get the pass. If that is something that could help curb abusers, then they should bring that back but of course there will never be a "perfect" system and those that abused the old system will find a way to abuse the new one.
    They have never required documentation for GAC's, it would be illegal to do so.
    Favorite Ride: Tower of Terror

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