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The Fleet Final Talking ATM agreement was negotiated by Lainey Feingold and co-counsel Stan Eichner of the Disability Law Center in Boston, Massachusetts, using Structured Negotiations on behalf of the Bay State Council of the Blind and other Massachusetts advocates. Fleet, which was subsequently purchased by Bank of America, agreed in this document to install Talking ATMs at all of the Bank’s locations. The initial Fleet Agreement resulted in the first Talking ATMs in New England and a comprehensive alternative formats policy. It was the second agreement in the United States to require that a bank’’s website be accessible.
The Bank One Final Agreement was negotiated by Lainey Feingold and Linda Dardarian using Structured Negotiations on behalf of blind advocates Kelly Pierce and Anna Byrne. In the Agreement, Bank One (now Chase) agreed to install 1,500 Talking ATMs, institute a national alternative formats policy, and upgrade its website to comply with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) promulgated by the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) of the World Wide Web Consortium. As of March, 2008, Chase Bank, the successor to Bank One, had over 9,000 Talking ATMs.
The press release posted below was the second release issued by Fleet Bank about its Talking ATMs. Read the first Fleet Bank Talking ATM press release. This release announced new Talking ATM features as well as the availability of Braille, Large Print and audio information and on-line accessibility at fleet.com. The releases were the result of two agreements that Fleet signed with Bay State Council of the Blind and others using the Structured Negotiations process.
The Wells Fargo press release about its Spanish-speaking ATMs is one of several releases the bank issued as a result of its Talking ATM initiative. That initiative was the result of the agreement signed in 1999 as a result of the Structured Negotiations process.
This article Lainey wrote about Talking ATMs was published in January, 2003 in AccessWorld(R), a publication of the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB). Part 2 of this Article, titled “You Can Bank on It, Part 2: Advocacy, Outreach, and Legal Authority for Talking ATMs,” can be found in the March, 2003 issue of Access World.
This settlement agreement is the second First Union agreement negotiated by Lainey and Linda Dardarian using Structured Negotiations on behalf of representatives of the blind community in North Carolina and Pennsylvania. Tom Earle, formerly with the Disabilities Law Project in Philadelphia, now known as the Disability Rights Network of Pennsylvania, also represented the Claimants. In the initial First Union agreement, the bank began its Talking ATM roll-out. In this agreement, First Union, subsequently purchased by Wachovia, expanded its Talking ATM commitment, agreed to make its website accessible, and adopted a comprehensive alternative format policy. As of early 2008, Wachovia has thousands of Talking ATMs throughout the United States.