Child with albinism
I am writing in response to the Aug. 7 article "Special shirt allows child with special needs to use city pool." I read this article with great interest as my son, Nathaniel, is the child that has albinism.
I would like to point out a few things that did not get mentioned in the article, but first I would like to make a correction about the article.
The article says that I stated that my son "suffers" from albinism. I did not say that Nathaniel "suffers" from albinism, I stated that he is albino. Quite frankly, the only thing my son "suffers" from is living in a city that has a lack of knowledge concerning disabilities.
As for the "special shirt" that the pool manager gave my son, it's a starter swim shirt that anyone can buy at Wal-Mart. Mr. Potthoff failed to mention that Mrs. Crocker had stopped by my apartment and said that Nathaniel could swim in a T-shirt as long as it is a white T shirt.
Mr. Potthoff also didn't mention that the doctor's note was presented to the pool manager on July 22, and the pool manager would not accept it.
Mr. Potthoff says that the pool staff did all they could in this situation which I find amusing. The pool staff did what the city ordinance told them to do, in this instance, it didn't allow my child to swim with his shirt on, though I told the pool manager that my child is albino.
There is a fine line here. Yes, the pool staff followed the rules set forth by the city. Fortunately, individuals with disabilities of any kind have a different set of guidelines that separates them from the rest of us and those guidelines supercede the rules the city sets.
Had the pool staff done everything they could in this situation, Nathaniel would have been allowed to swim with his shirt on without any question as soon as I told them "I'm sorry, my son is Albino, I will not take his shirt off."
In this situation, I cannot blame the pool staff for what happened as they were just following the rules. This is being put on the city, as they are the ones who make the rules and they are the ones who did not train the pool staff on how to properly handle a special needs situation.
With proper training by the city, this occurrence never would have happened. The sign you want to put up should have been put up a long time ago, about the time you put the lift chair in.
One last thought. Our City of McCook wants people to stay here, or move back here after college. If you treated people a little better, they might want to stay or come back. If you want to know what it's like to be a colored person in the 1950s, come to McCook; the city will help you with that.