The second year that I wanted to go, I allowed another psychic to talk me out of going. He said that he was horribly disappointed and got nothing out of it when he went. Since I trusted him, I decided that it wasn’t worth the expense of going. I regretted that decision.
As I watched this video two weeks ago, I realized that my health was now in a place that I could attend a John Edward event, and this time, I wasn’t going to let anyone talk me out of it because the desire to go was still so strong for me. I went to John Edward’s website and discovered that his next event was actually in Austin on July 9th! I was amazed at the synchronicity of this and decided it was finally meant to be. I purchased a ticket and then contacted the ticket agency to help me with disability accommodation arrangements under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
There, my disappointment began. The first request was met with an absolute “we won’t meet your disabilities” type response; I was offered a refund. I was horrified. The ADA doesn’t allow this kind of blatant discrimination against the disabled, and yet, everywhere I turned this week, I’ve found disability discrimination. I tried again with the ticketing agency who were acting as a middleperson with John Edward’s staff; the second response was better but still was clear that they were not willing to work with me. Feeling emotionally defeated, I contacted my guides and decided to accept the refund. I just didn’t have it in me to fight for the chance to see John Edward.
After the refund processed, I sent the following note through John Edward’s website. I don’t expect to hear back from Edward himself; I expected that an intern or administrative assistant would receive it and send me a form letter telling me that it would be taken into consideration (and then probably discarded without action or change, though they wouldn’t say that to me). To my disappointment, I have not gotten any kind of response, though. I remain disheartened that a psychic medium who focuses on healing clients could possibly allow his organization to discriminate against those who are disabled.
To John Edward:
I am aware that at this point, you do not run the day-to-day issues with your business. However, as your business is selling your name and your reputation, I feel you should be aware of my experiences with those you employ or subcontract with.
I was disabled at the age of 28 in 2003; For 12+ years, I’ve dealt with severe health problems which left me homebound for many years. I’ve been able to regain health over the past few years and am now able to function in society with minimal accommodations. I am not able to stand for extended amounts of time: the line at the grocery store is about all I can handle. As I can usually walk short distances without issues, I don’t use a wheelchair. I have a state issued disabled placard for the days when walking is more difficult. I am also very sensitive to fragrances. When I am in public, I have to avoid those wearing perfume, cologne, etc. I also can’t tolerate cigarette smoke residue. This means that if someone has one of these items on them, I have to move away. It’s a relatively minor hassle in the perspective of life.
When I purchased my ticket to your Austin event, I requested disability assistance through Etix. I asked that my message be passed on to the appropriate people on your staff so that I could have direct contact with them. I’ve learned from past experience that trying to arrange disability accommodations through a third party results in a less than entertaining version of the “telephone game.” Etix refused to get me directly connected with a member of your staff who is in charge of handling individuals who need disability accommodation. They insisted on continuing to be the middleperson. The result was confusion and an initial refusal to accommodate my disabilities at all. The second round resulted in a slightly better response but it was still far from satisfactory. At that point, I decided that I wasn’t going to keep fighting with your staff. I just don’t have the emotional energy to engage in this issue this week. I accepted a refund and the fact that I was not going to be welcomed at your event.
From a karmic viewpoint, I am certain that you can understand that not meeting the needs of the disabled is not a great idea. Basic compassion for those who are challenged is often lacking in our society, but it is not something I would expect from your organization.
From a legal standpoint, I am sure as a former hospital administrator you can understand that your staff’s immediate “No, we won’t work with you” response was illegal under the Americans with Disabilities Act. The ADA exists for good reason, though I’ve found that I often have to mention the “L” word of lawyer or lawsuit before most organizations will even consider providing disabilities. I don’t like having to use that word; I’d prefer people functioned from a place of compassion and understanding.
I am requesting that you designate a disability contact on your staff for your events that are on the road. I am asking that any time someone with a disability requests assistance in attending your events that the designated staff person responds directly to the individual with disabilities and does their best to ensure that the person with disabilities has a positive experience in gaining access to your events.
The irony of this all is that I wasn’t coming to your Austin event hoping to receive a reading. I clearly set the intention when I purchased the ticket that I not be read because I know others need to have the experience far more than me. If I want to talk to the other side, I can do that for free from the comfort and convenience of my own home. I am having a hard time articulating why I wanted to attend, but it is somewhere along the lines of wanting to observe your energy while you work as well as the energy around you. My guides assure me that the result of failing to get accommodation to your event is part of a greater life lesson, but at this point I’m not sure what it is yet.
I hope that your brief stay in Austin is a good one and that the event will bring healing to many people.
Elizabeth Galen, Ph.D.
Green Heart Guidance, LLC