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article imageOverweight man sues White Castle over booth size

By Kim I. Hartman     Sep 12, 2011 in Business
Nanuet - An overweight New York man has filed a lawsuit against the White Castle fast-food chain alleging they have violated his rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act by not accommodating people of his size by providing larger, more comfortable booths.
The 290-pound man claims the stationary seating at White Castle isn't designed for a person of his size.
Stock broker Martin Kessman, 64, told the NY Post he was forced to take legal action after two years of complaints to the corporate office had not resulted in new booths being installed to replace the existing seating.
Kessman said, "the chain’s uncomfortable booths violate the civil rights of fat people." He said he was "mortified' the first time he went to the Nanuet, N.Y., restaurant and tried to "wedge himself' in a booth and realized he wouldn't fit.
He claims he has not been able to go back to the eatery since that awkward first experience because of his humiliation. Kessman said that to add further insult to the injury he received trying to squeeze himself into the average size booth, the corporate office of White Castle responded on three occasions with condescending letters and coupons for hamburgers with an extra charge for cheese.
Kessman said that the White Castle corporate office promised to redesign their seating area and had even sent him the design for the new booths, which would accommodate his needs, but after two years of waiting he felt it was time to respond with legal action.
"The Americans with Disabilities Act is applicable -- not only to me, but to pregnant women and to handicapped people, according to Kessman, who is suing for bigger chairs and unspecified damages," reports MyFoxNY. "I just want to sit down like a normal person."
Kessman's plight has not been met with compassion or kindness by commenter's on social networks who say his obesity is willful misconduct, and he should not be entitled to any special treatment.
White Castle spokeswoman Jamie Richardson told the NY Post that Kessman could have asked a store manager for a regular chair and one would have been provided.
The lawsuit by Kessman was filed in a Manhattan federal court.
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