University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
new search
page permalink
Case Name Toney-Dick v. Doar DR-NY-0008
Docket / Court 1:12-cv-09162-KBF ( S.D.N.Y. )
State/Territory New York
Case Type(s) Disability Rights-Pub. Accom.
Public Benefits / Government Services
Attorney Organization Legal Services/Legal Aid
Case Summary
On December 17, 2012, a group of disabled persons filed a class action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York against the New York Department of Human Resources and its director in his official capacity under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, Section ... read more >
On December 17, 2012, a group of disabled persons filed a class action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York against the New York Department of Human Resources and its director in his official capacity under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Food Stamp Act, 7 U.S.C. §§ 2020(e)(2)(b)(i) and (e)(11), and New York State and City Statutes.

Plaintiffs alleged that D-SNAP, an emergency food stamp program implemented after Hurricane Sandy, discriminated against disabled persons by having only one application center and an in-person registration requirement. Both of the limited availability of registration centers and the requirement for in-person registration were absent from the defendant's standard food stamps program precisely because, as the plaintiffs argued, they discriminate against persons with disabilities who may not be able to travel to the registration center. The plaintiffs, represented by the Legal Aid Society of New York, asked the court for a preliminary injunction, declaratory and injunctive relief, and attorney's fees.

On March 18, 2013, the District Court (Judge Katherine B. Forrest) denied plaintiff's motion for a preliminary injunction as the plaintiffs failed to prove that irreparable harm would result if the injunction was not granted. Judge Forrest also dismissed plaintiffs' complaint finding that the plaintiffs needed to sue the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture in his official capacity in order to properly bring the suit as they authorized the D-SNAP plan and also paid part of the liabilities under D-SNAP.

On March 29, 2013, the plaintiffs filed an amended complaint that added the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture in his official capacity and the U.S. Department of Agriculture as defendants. The new complaint also added a claim for retroactive award of D-SNAP benefits to those who were excluded from the program due to the alleged discriminatory practices.

On September 16, 2013, the District Court certified two subclasses: (1) "disabled individuals who were eligible to apply for benefits from the Sandy D-SNAP Program," and (2) "individuals who may be eligible to apply for benefits from a future D-SNAP program and who will need reasonable accommodations because of a disability (or disabilities)."

On November 14, 2013, the District Court dismissed plaintiffs' claims against the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture and the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture for lack of subject matter jurisdiction primarily on two grounds: (1) the Department of Agriculture assured the District Court that if the other defendants were found liable, then the federal government would pay its share of the D-SNAP benefits, and (2) plaintiffs cannot sue the Department of Agriculture because there is no clear cause of action concerned that if it were to recognize a cause of action against a government agency for providing emergency support to local governments then federal agencies would be more reluctant to lend help and advice during future emergencies. Toney Dick v. Doar 2013 WL 6057949.

As of February 21, 2014, the parties are in settlement negotiations and the case is still ongoing.

Brian Kempfer - 02/21/2014


compress summary

- click to show/hide ALL -
Issues and Causes of Action
click to show/hide detail
Issues
Benefit Source
Food stamps
Disability
disability, unspecified
Least restrictive environment
Mental impairment
Mobility impairment
Visual impairment
Discrimination-basis
Disability (inc. reasonable accommodations)
General
Access to public accommodations - governmental
Classification / placement
Pattern or Practice
Poverty/homelessness
Public benefits (includes, e.g., in-state tuition, govt. jobs)
Reasonable Accommodations
Mental Disability
Intellectual/developmental disability, unspecified
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action State law
Section 504 (Rehabilitation Act), 29 U.S.C. § 701
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12111 et seq.
Defendant(s) New York City Human Rights Resources Administration
United States Department of Agriculture
Plaintiff Description Disabled persons eligible to apply for emergency food stamps under New York City's response program to Hurricane Sandy, D-SNAP
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Legal Services/Legal Aid
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None yet
Source of Relief None yet
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing Yes
Case Listing DR-NY-0007 : Brooklyn Center for Independence of the Disabled v. Bloomberg (S.D.N.Y.)
DR-NY-0009 : Lovely H. v. Eggleston (S.D.N.Y.)
PB-NY-0026 : Matter of Fidler v. Doar (State Court)
Docket(s)
1:12-cv-09162-KBF (S.D.N.Y.) 01/22/2014
DR-NY-0008-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Class Action Complaint; Injunctive and Declaratory Relief 12/17/2012 (2012 WL 6555431)
DR-NY-0008-0001.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order 01/08/2013 (S.D.N.Y.)
DR-NY-0008-0002.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum Decision & Order 03/18/2013 (2013 WL 1314954) (S.D.N.Y.)
DR-NY-0008-0003.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Second Amended Class Action Complaint 03/29/2013
DR-NY-0008-0004.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Proposed Order 05/13/2013 (S.D.N.Y.)
DR-NY-0008-0005.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum and Order 09/13/2013 (2013 WL 5295221) (S.D.N.Y.)
DR-NY-0008-0006.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum Decision and Order 10/03/2013 (2013 WL 5549921) (S.D.N.Y.)
DR-NY-0008-0007.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Opinion & Order (Granting Federal Defendant's Motion to Dismiss) 11/14/2013 (2013 WL 6057949) (S.D.N.Y.)
DR-NY-0008-0008.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Judges Forrest, Katherine Bolan (S.D.N.Y.)
DR-NY-0008-0003 | DR-NY-0008-0005 | DR-NY-0008-0006 | DR-NY-0008-0007 | DR-NY-0008-0008 | DR-NY-0008-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Banks, Steven L. (New York)
DR-NY-0008-0001 | DR-NY-0008-0004
Goldiner, Judith (New York)
DR-NY-0008-0001 | DR-NY-0008-0002 | DR-NY-0008-0004
Holder, Adriene L. (New York)
DR-NY-0008-0001 | DR-NY-0008-0002 | DR-NY-0008-0004
Jois, Goutam Umesh (New York)
DR-NY-0008-9000
Kelleher, Katie (New York)
DR-NY-0008-0001 | DR-NY-0008-0004
Kelleher, Kathleen M. (New York)
DR-NY-0008-0002
Lanka, Sumani Vani (New York)
DR-NY-0008-0001 | DR-NY-0008-0002 | DR-NY-0008-0004 | DR-NY-0008-9000
Mastro, Randy M (New York)
DR-NY-0008-0002 | DR-NY-0008-9000
Nematzadeh, Justin Solomon (New York)
DR-NY-0008-9000
Stephens, Kenneth (New York)
DR-NY-0008-0001 | DR-NY-0008-0002 | DR-NY-0008-0004 | DR-NY-0008-9000
Sternberg, Susan R. (New York)
DR-NY-0008-0002 | DR-NY-0008-0004 | DR-NY-0008-9000
Welber, Susan (New York)
DR-NY-0008-0001 | DR-NY-0008-0002 | DR-NY-0008-0004
Defendant's Lawyers Fang, Linda (New York)
DR-NY-0008-9000
Gasior, John P (New York)
DR-NY-0008-9000
La Morte, Tara Marie (New York)
DR-NY-0008-9000
Longley, Serena Mabel (New York)
DR-NY-0008-9000
Roberts, Thomas B. (Pennsylvania)
DR-NY-0008-9000
Sweet, Emily (New York)
DR-NY-0008-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

- click to show/hide ALL -

new search
page permalink

- top of page -