GAC changes at the MK

Discussion in 'disABILITIES!' started by jujube, Apr 24, 2012.

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  1. jujube

    jujube DIS Veteran

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    Yesterday we were at the MK and were surprised at the GAC changes.
    At POTC, my friend showed her son's GAC and the CM pretty rudely directed us to go to the left line. Her son is autistic, he functions at a fairly high level but can lash out with his arms sometimes. We were both on pins and needles because it was so crowded and worried that he might hit someone. After the ride was over, I went over and nicely but firmly told the CM that she might not want to be so flip in her attitude. I also told her that my friend's son had the card for a reason. The CM answered that when it isn't crowded, they direct people to the left line and do not allow people to use the alternate entrance. I informed her that we saw a gang of teens using it and said they were glad to know someone who could let them cut the line. It was pretty darned crowded too. The line was out of the doors.
    Then at The Haunted Mansion, again my friend showed the GAC and the CMs took us to the regular line and told people,"Excuse us, we need to let these people in the line." The first people they said this to refused. The next set allowed us in but grumbled.
    My question is what was wrong with the way it was handled before? My friend's son cannot help having autism. We got a bunch of eye rolls from people in the lines and from CMs. In the past, we were able to bring him and have a very enjoyable trip. This trip has not been as much fun both because of the GAC changes and because of the CM's attitudes towards us when we show
    the card.
    We do plan to speak to someone in guest services tomorrow when we go back to the MK.
     
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  3. ttintagel

    ttintagel DIS Veteran

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    I don't think it's a change in GAC policy so much as it's a big variation in how individual cast members are trained in its use. When I was there in June, I noticed that some CM's handled it better than others.
     
  4. jujube

    jujube DIS Veteran

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    When we were here in November it was handled the same old way. One of the MK CMs told us yesterday that they are now handling GACs differently at the MK. Epcot, DHS, and AK all handled the GAC just the same as always.
     
  5. RichmondTiggerFan

    RichmondTiggerFan Favorites: Splash Mountain, FOTLK, Tigger!, Chip

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    Let Guest Services know (polite but firm) that this is totally unacceptable to you. It sounds like some CM's need re-training.
     
  6. EastYorkDisneyFan

    EastYorkDisneyFan DIS Veteran

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    From what the OP posted I would guess maybe the lines for the alternate entrances at the MK are being over run with people with disabilities. Keep in mind most of the older attractions at the MK were built before any one had to think about making them ADA compliant. As the OP said it was crowded that day, it could very well be a policy in the MK that on crowded days that the alternate entrances are for guest in wheelchairs or ECV only versions other disabilities. Where as most of EPCOT and all of the other parks were built post ADA and thus have more space for alternate entrances and or have wider ques to accommodate everyone.
     
  7. Maggie'sMom

    Maggie'sMom DIS Veteran

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    Just because a guest isn't in a wheelchair doesn't mean they don't need the alternate entrance. The OP's friend had a GAC for her son and appropriate accommodations should have been made. What was offered was not appropriate for the child's needs.
     
  8. EastYorkDisneyFan

    EastYorkDisneyFan DIS Veteran

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    What if the wait at the alternate entrance was longer then the one they were directed through?
     
  9. ttintagel

    ttintagel DIS Veteran

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    I was there the day after Memorial Day. I doubt it's significantly more crowded now than it was then.
     
  10. andersonsc

    andersonsc Mouseketeer

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    My question is - what were the child's needs? It just seems like there are more and more people asking about GACs for autistic children. I have some experiance with children with this problem. I know some have more needs then others. We have taken children on the spectrum to Disney. If they need personal space then we give it to them - one adult on either side in line works well for the kids we went with. If they start to have a melt down, we dealt with it. I just don't understand when I read how a child with autism doesn't like to stand in line. No child likes to stand in line. Can I get a GAC for the 4 year old I have that doesn't like lines. I hear all the time how the GAC doesn't make the lines shorter but it really seems like so many people wouldn't want one, if it didn't make things shorter to some degree. I'm not saying those in wheelchairs don't wait longer. I'm sure they do b/c not all rides can accomadate numerous wheelchairs at once. What I don't get is what others use the GAC for? I know I sound very rude, I don't mean to be but I really want to know what a GAC does for ambulatory people other then make the line shorter.
     
  11. EastYorkDisneyFan

    EastYorkDisneyFan DIS Veteran

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    Actually what I was more suggesting was that there were more guest with wheelchairs at those particular attractions at the time and maybe the alternate entrance may not have been the best fit at the time. I have actually gone on pirates where the left side line was packed and been the only person going down the right side line. I was the only one in a boat and the one behind was full. also the boat that left before me fro the right line had no one in it well the one for the left was full.
     
  12. Sandy321

    Sandy321 <font color=darkorchid>Crazy enough to want to do

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    when we were there during Spring Break (week before Easter) and went to MK Guest Services, the CM was very kind, and took the previous GAC and gave us a GAC, and explained changes in the GAC. IMHO the CM was very polite, answered several of my questions I had regarding some changes - I admit I was a bit nervous - but knew, that all I had to do was relax, and go with the flow, if it didn't work, then I would come back to Guest Services and explain the needs that were not being met!

    low and behold, everything went smoothly.

    Its very hard to accept change, its very hard as I always expect the worse, and try and plan to eliminate problems - its even harder for me to relax!!

    At the Goofy Barnstormer ride, we actually waited 20 min, and the ride was actually 53 seconds (dd has become obsessed with the stop watch lately!)

    we did not wait for Dumbo - we just watched. (and the Guest Service CM was very specific that there was nothing in our needs that could be helped at Dumbo - but I knew dd wouldn't want to ride this, just observe all the changes - and take 100 pictures!)
     
  13. BillSears

    BillSears DIS Veteran

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    For the 2 rides brought up by the OP, POTC and HM, the wheelchair/ECV line is the regular line. There is no alternate entrance for wheelchair users at these attractions.
     
  14. wendylovesdisney

    wendylovesdisney <font color=blue>What's a Pooh Bear got to do arou

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    I'm unclear about the changes. There's no alternate entrances at all now?
    And for the poster who said that no child likes to wait in lines, that's true. However, if you have a child with psychological issues, (as I do) once you've heard your child wail like a wounded animal from anxiety you would understand why an alternate entrance can be a godsend.
     
  15. SueM in MN

    SueM in MN combining the teacups with a roller coaster Moderator

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    The difference in the situation the OP mentioned is that the family wanted to go thru an access that requires going into a backstage area, where guests are not allowed without an escort.
    It is very possible that there was not a CM able to accompany them at the time, so that way could not be used.

    At Pirates, the left lane is where they route guests using wheelchairs - the queue does not get as narrow or winding toward the boarding area as it gets on the right boarding area.
    More guests tend to go into the right line, but there's nothing to prevent guests from going into the left lane.

    Epcot, AK and the Studio were built with Mainstream lines, so in almost every case guests with wheelchairs and ECVs wait in the same line with everyone else.
     
  16. SueM in MN

    SueM in MN combining the teacups with a roller coaster Moderator

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    Correct
     
  17. EastYorkDisneyFan

    EastYorkDisneyFan DIS Veteran

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    That's partly true HM they take wheelchairs out of the line after the stretch rooms and they go in the exit, and for pirates there is a section of the left side Que that they sometimes put wheelchairs through, they only load them on the left side as they then have to move the chair to the exit as the boats can not return with guest in them.
     
  18. EastYorkDisneyFan

    EastYorkDisneyFan DIS Veteran

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    They do that, I'm sorry I don't really get why that should be allowed except maybe for a celebrity or possibly a make a wish kid, but to expect that every time you ride Pirates, is just wrong.
     
  19. SueM in MN

    SueM in MN combining the teacups with a roller coaster Moderator

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    Neither of those are alternate entrances though. They are alternate boarding areas. And neither of them shorten the distance or the time waited.

    At Pirates, the waiting time in either the left or right side depends on how many guest choose to go in either one. guests with wherlchairs can only go in the lefy.

    At Hainted Mansion, the pull off point is as the other guests are going into the boarding room, so most of them will be boarding before the guests in wheelchairs are boarded.
     
  20. EastYorkDisneyFan

    EastYorkDisneyFan DIS Veteran

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    I understand how both of them work I'm just wondering why everyone who has a GAC want's to use them as they don't shorten the line at all if anything they can make it longer for them. I can understand if you have no other alternative to using them but to complain when they tell you that the regular line will be shorter is ridiculous.
     
  21. LockShockBarrel

    LockShockBarrel Pudge controls the weather.

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    I love when you post from your phone Sue ;)
     
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