GOLDEN GATE PALMS ACCESSIBILTIY STATEMENT
Dear Fellow Plant Lovers,
First of all, ALOHA to all of you and thank you for taking the time to visit our website. The WWW.GOLDENGATEPALMS.COM website is an information only website with no capabilities of E-commerce functionality. Our products can only be purchased at our physical places of business.
Golden Gate Palms is committed to making our website’s content accessible and user friendly to everyone. If you are shopping for trees or plants and are having difficulty viewing or navigating the content on this website, or notice any content, feature, or functionality that you believe is not fully accessible to people with disabilities, please email me personally at firstname.lastname@example.org with “disabled access” in the subject line and provide a description of the specific feature you feel is not fully accessible. If you’d like, we can set up a time for me to personally guide you through any component of the content that you find difficult.
This website has been created over several decades. It has been a labor of love and my life’s work. It serves as an international, open-source compendium of horticultural information – an encyclopedia of plant species and how and where they thrive. It is a universal asset enjoyed by countless plant lovers around the world, most of whom will never visit our nurseries nor purchase a single plant from us. And instead of being bothered by that, I am rather flattered and honored by it.
A couple of months ago, my website was sued for being non-ADA compliant. I quickly learned that while there are no clear ADA regulations that spell out exactly what compliant web content is, any businesses that falls under ADA Title I or ADA Title III are required to develop and maintain "reasonable accomodation" of accessibility for any website they employ in their operations.
Our case is not unique as enterprising lawyers and their clients can find accessibility problems with nearly any website today: fonts that are too small, colors that do not contrast enough, misspelled subtitles or captions, etc.
So, saddened, depressed, and overwhelmed by the prospect of having to rebuild my 108-page website and lose much of its rich content, I shut it down for several months to the complaint of many, again, all over the world. I offered to double the monetary amount requested in the form of plants to the out of town folks who sued me. After all, shopping for plants is what they claimed to be trying to do when they encountered difficulties with my site. Curiously, they did not want plants, and preferred cold hard cash. Interestingly, I learned other nurseries in California were also sued by this same “shopper”. The enterprising lawyer and I ended up settling for a fraction of what he originally requested, and certainly far less than the cost to defend the claim. However, if this were to happen again, we may fully defend any such claim as several client/friend attorneys were so incensed by this abuse when I described it to them that they offered to defend me au gratis if any such claims are made in the future withing this realm.
This experience, however, taught me about how I can make my site better and more accessible and how I might personally provide accommodations to those who may truly need them. So, if you are shopping for a plant or tree and have any trouble whatsoever navigating my site, I invite you to email me at email@example.com and I will promptly set up a time, at our mutual convenience, to give you a personal consultation and walk you through my site, via phone, video call, or other means. And if you do find difficulty in using the site from an accessibility perspective, I implore you to make such difficulty or barrier known to me in exactly defined terms so I can diligently address the issue so as to help our site become ever more accessible to help others who may otherwise confront the difficulties you experienced.
Gary Gragg, President