JR Harding


The Americans with Disabilities Act is celebrating its 25th anniversary. Disability advocates say there’s still a long way to go in boosting access to jobs, technology, and buildings.


JR Harding is a quadriplegic who regularly gets gas from a station in Tallahassee where they know him. For years, he’s been using the stations call button to get help when filling up. But that button could soon go away, and Harding says he is concerned.

“It preempts Leon County’s rule and Brevard County’s rule and prevents any other county from implementing a better accommodation at the gas pump,” he says about a proposal in the state legislature that would replace gas station call buttons in favor of a phone number customers can dial if they need assistance.

JR Harding

At a meeting Tuesday, Leon County Commissioners will consider a watered-down version of an ordinance aimed at making it easier for people with disabilities to get help pumping gas. Advocates for tougher rules still want the law to do more.

The proposed ordinance would require gas stations to display phone numbers on pumps that a driver could call for help.

Disability advocate JR Harding lives with quadriplegia and says he’s left stations without pumping gas because it’s so hard to get assistance. “Is my time any less valuable than your time? The answer’s no," he says.