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ADHD and Front of the Line Privileges


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So here's an interesting article through the BBC about children with ADHD that are allowed to go to the front of the line at theme parks, because they cannot "wait." What does everyone else think about this? Here's the article and the original post

 

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/8232633.stm

 

ADHD 'queue jumpers' spark debate

 

 

One in 20 schoolchildren is said to suffer from a form of ADHD

Allowing children with attention-deficit disorders to "queue jump" at theme parks could be doing them more harm than good, one expert suggests.

Children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are given passes in most theme parks if they can prove they have the condition.

This may reduce the stress of waiting, which they find very difficult.

But Professor Katya Rubia, of London's Institute of Psychiatry, said it was important they learned to do so.

The Disability Discrimination Act puts a duty on attractions such as leisure parks to accommodate the needs of all visitors: this can include those with ADHD if they provide the necessary documentation.

ADHD is now the most common childhood-onset behavioural disorder.

Those affected have a greatly reduced ability to maintain attention without being distracted and find it difficult to control what they are doing or saying.

At least one in 20 schoolchildren - 360,000 in total - is thought to have some degree of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), but some critics argue unruly behaviour is being overly medicalised.

Early lunch

Professor Rubia who has researched ADHD said her work showed such children did have serious problems with understanding time and an inability to delay a reward.

 

This is no different to these children being allowed to go ahead in the dinner queue at school

Andrea Bilbow

ADDISS

"This is clearly a medical condition, but it isn't right to bring them up in a system where they never have to wait. You're not making it any better for them - this is something they can be helped to learn.

"I can see why parents might like it, but in the long term you are not doing the child any favours. This is a condition which we can improve, and learning to wait should be part of that process."

The fact that ADHD children and carers can avail themselves of this scheme has sparked some controversy since appearing in the Times Educational Supplement.

But the chief executive of The National Attention Deficit Disorder Information and Support Service said there was nothing controversial about it.

"These are children with a disability who cannot wait. You cannot teach someone who is crippled to walk, someone who is deaf to hear," says Andrea Bilbow. "They have a 30% maturity lag, and are emotionally younger than their peers.

"This is no different to these children being allowed to go ahead in the dinner queue at school.

"What people need to remember is that it doesn't just make it easier for the child and their carers, it's better for everyone in that queue too."

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I have ADHD, I COMPLETELY agree with this policy. This should be done at American parks, in particular CP and KI.

 

I was just thinking the last time I was at CP that the waiting in line was horrible because of my ADHD.

 

Wow, those people in Europe are so progressive.

 

**Please note that although I do... hey look a chicken... have ADHD, I think this... oooooooh shiny things..... is over the top.

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You cannot teach someone who is crippled to walk, someone who is deaf to hear," says Andrea Bilbow

I completely disagree with this logic. There is a difference between "accomadating" someone with a disability and taking advatage of a "disability". I think this is a case of the ladder. ADHD by itself is still debatable as a "disability" in the medical world, and to make concrete policies (not just in theme parks) based on things and conditions that are finicky at best, just makes me think that anybody could get special treatment for a "condition" they have.

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I do think they should make them wait in line.

 

While I was at Dorney Park and waiting in line for Wild Mouse, a group of about 5 kids from the age of probably, 9-14, got in line and just went in front of everybody, yes, they did have a wristband, but only one person was wearing it. An asian woman who barely spoke english saw this and decided to join them. When they got to me, I let them go, but they decided to stop right in front of me.

 

I saw a few people take advantage of the people with types of disorders while I was there. They just pretended to be their friends while in line, but abandon them when the ride is over.

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I have ADHD and totally disagree with this policy. As far as disabilities go, ADHD is fairly mild, and treatable with medication. In fact, my ADHD keeps me entertained in line by allowing my mind to run wild.

 

I think parks are afraid to deny these people exit passes, otherwise they'll be accused of being insensitive to their guest's "needs". It's amazing what lengths parks will go to to avoid bad publicity, no matter how stupid it is.

 

Edit: Perhaps there's a good reason for this policy. It keeps the ADHD kids out of line so they don't run amok and irritate the crap out of other people. I'll have to give this more thought.

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I have a very strong opinion on the whole "disabled queue" system.

 

My cousins had an illness which meant he could not stand for more then 10 mins without having to sit down and rest, he has every right to use the disabled system as would anyone else with a mobility issue. ADHD is NOT an illness I belive should be allowed to use this system as in MY opinion I belive it should be restricted for mobility issues only.

 

For those that do not know the way Merlin Entertainments parks now handle disabled guests and exit passes I will now explain.

 

When you arrive at the park you head for Guest Services where the staff at the counter will ask you for PROOF of your disability or if you are already on their system. If you show them this proof they issue you with a card.

 

On this card are the major attractions from the park such as at Thorpe Park Saw, Stealth, Rush, Nemesis Inferno, Colossus, Loggers Leap & Tidal Wave. On the card are a series of boxes. The registered disabled person then gets a wristband which allows him/her to use the exits of all attractions to ride with up to 3 helpers. Once you have recvived all of this you are free to go off and use the exits of the rides, but the card works as a Q-Bot does, so say you go to Saw: The Ride at 11:00 and the queue for the ride at that time is 60 mins the member of staff at the exit of the major attraction listed on the car will write 12:00pm on the card which then means you will not be allowed to ride another major attraction until 12:00. For other rides that are not on the list you are allowed to use the exits as many times as you like.

 

I personally think this system is fantastic and most importantly fair, it allows a disabled person to ride just like everyone else but it also means they have to wait before they can ride the next major attraction.

 

-Craig K

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^^^So you're saying mentally disabled people have to wait in line? I don't agree with that.

 

Uhhhh...what stops someone from being mentally disabled from waiting in a line? with a million and 1 mental disabilities that would cause more problems than anything. Someone can say "I have a stress disorder and I need to move to the front of the line" while someone can say I get anxiety for waiting in the end of the line, let me cut everyone else. This may sound mean but if your mental illiness causes you to go thru that much trouble then a visit to a theme park may not be what the doctor ordered...

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Well no I don't mean it like that but I know quite a few people with ADHD and they can queue for over an hour with no problems. I've been in the queue with them, so i'm saying I don't belive ADHD should be classed as one of the things that get to use the system from what I've seen.

 

I'm not trying to discriminate here I'm just giving me opinon and I don't wish to offend anyone.

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^^ When I said "mentally disabled", I basically meant mentally retarded. For their safety and the comfort of those around them, I don't think mentally retarded people should be made to wait in line.

 

^ I figured that's what you meant, I just wanted to be sure.

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I dont know but I would feel thats kinda sub human to basically "you're "challanged" you dont have to wait in line". most of the people I know with "challanges" dont wanna be treated differently than what would be considered "normal" people. They wanna fit in and by saying hey guy, dont wait in line, you're retarded would insult me if I was mentally "challanged"...the jury is still out on that one.

 

Jarvis "retarded is offensive" morant

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I think there should be no accommodation for people with ADHD. I, myself, have ADHD, and I wait in line just fine...been doing it since I was 11, when my ADHD was REALLY bad! This is not the same as someone with one leg not being able to stand in line for hours on end...that I understand. If I went to a park with such a policy, I wouldn't feel right about skipping the line. To me, that would feel like taking advantage of or "cashing in" on my condition. I can wait in lines with the best of them. Personally, I don't like to, so I try to go to parks on low-crowd days. But, I wouldn't use ADHD as some sort of psychological FlashPass. And, like Kennyweird said, lines allow my mind to run wild. I can just crawl inside my head and entertain myself until my front row ride is ready.

-Doug "Ritalin sucks!" Heim

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I work at Cedar Point and while there is nothing for people with ADHD, guests with autism are able to get right on. After getting a special access book from Park Operations, guests with autism go up the exit, show a ride host their book, and are boarded on the very next ride. They can only use the pass once per ride. If they would like to ride again, they can get a boarding time. If our line is an hour long at 1PM, they get a boarding time of 2pm. It is basically like a flash pass. They are able to enjoy the park while they are waiting for that time.

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This is a really tricky subject... but I can't believe some people are completely dismissing it and acting as if ADHD isn't a "legit" problem to have.

 

There are varying degrees of ADHD the same way there are various stages of cancer, or varying degrees of autism. One autistic child may have symptoms as minor as a bit of a speech impediment. Another might be completely incapable of forming sentences, conveying/retaining ideas, and may frequently cause bodily harm to his/herself by repeated punches or clawing at their own flesh.

 

Some children with Autism would be capable of waiting in line at an amusement park. Others would not.

 

It's the same thing with ADHD. Some people with this disorder would be fine waiting in line. Others would not.

 

Definitely a tricky subject and a fine line. Certainly some would abuse the privilege. But treating ADHD with less concern or attention because it doesn't show up on a blood test or a CT Scan isn't fair to those with the disorder. You could argue that persons with physical disabilities should just "suck it up and deal with the pain/exhaustion" or not come to the park at all.

 

If we did that, we'd be ripped to shreds as insensitive, vile neanderthals. The same sort of respect should be shown for those with mental handicaps and disorders. Just because the disability doesn't manifest itself physically doesn't mean it isn't a disability.

 

The best thing to do is to offer a policy that works to eliminate the disadvantage these individuals suffer, without handing them all sorts of benefits and bonuses on a silver platter. The goal should be to provide an even footing for these individuals, not give them a leg up, but not leave them to fall behind.

 

The above mentioned CP policy is a good example in my opinion. Something in the spirit of a Six Flags flash pass, that requires a waiting time, but does not require it to take place in a confined, slow moving line is a step that will help those with disabilities without hurting or punishing other guests.

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I dont know but I would feel thats kinda sub human to basically "you're "challanged" you dont have to wait in line". most of the people I know with "challanges" dont wanna be treated differently than what would be considered "normal" people. They wanna fit in and by saying hey guy, dont wait in line, you're retarded would insult me if I was mentally "challanged"...the jury is still out on that one.

 

Jarvis "retarded is offensive" morant

Thank you for this post. My fiancee is a special education teacher that deals with kids that tend to be of the level of ADHD and the such. Those kids do want to be treated the same and feel awful when it is pointed out they have a disability.

 

My question is if your kid has ADHD and you know they can not wait in line, why take them to a theme park with large lines? It seems like the people should know what their child can handle and planning to it. In the US, it would seem like the parent should take the child to a park with a Flash Pass system.

 

This policy will lead to people abusing it. You may think "who would do that?" Just look at the people that rent wheel chairs at parks to use a medical pass for a party of 14.

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I dont know but I would feel thats kinda sub human to basically "you're "challanged" you dont have to wait in line". most of the people I know with "challanges" dont wanna be treated differently than what would be considered "normal" people. They wanna fit in and by saying hey guy, dont wait in line, you're retarded would insult me if I was mentally "challanged"...the jury is still out on that one.

 

Jarvis "retarded is offensive" morant

 

It's all in the eye of the beholder. A service one person appreciates another might find insulting or dehumanizing, it all depends on the person. Besides, I was more referring to people who are profoundly retarded and require a caregiver to lead them around, not people who are mildly retarded but otherwise functional, independent individuals.

 

BTW, I don't mean retarded in an offensive way, it's just shorter than typing out "people with a mental disability", which I'm sure will be considered offensive by 2015, anyway.

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^ Despite your defense on the matter, you're seeing it from an automatic must do perspective, not all of us who have a mental disabilty need special services. My Autism is high functioning, and what you're saying is the lower functioning end of the spectrum needs it.

 

There's a far difference between the two lines and the middle

 

I have Autism and I've waited in 2 hour lines before, this policy is freaking horrible! I can't see how this is good idea for the theme park industry, they're going to have a flood of kids pretending to have Autism or ADHD to get to the front of the line.

 

Example of me waiting in a long line this summer was a 90 minute wait for Fahrenheit at Hersheypark this August. I waited, and I got on without a hooch or snag. For god sake, I've compiled almost 900 posts on this forum too.

 

This policy may not directly apply to my condition, but I still don't agree with it.

 

This policy is bound for failure.

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I wonder how many ADHD people will suddenly uprise just to avoid queueing. I have a cousin who has ADHD so I kinda know what goes on. I can understand if someone has a disability to navigate through the queue as it has stairs, and can't stand for long periods of time/can't walk then it could be deemed appropriate to use the handicap routine...but attention span...No...this is just how I feel about the situation. Next, vision impaired people? People with slower thinking? May as well mix us all into 1 single queue.

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I do think they should make them wait in line.

 

While I was at Dorney Park and waiting in line for Wild Mouse, a group of about 5 kids from the age of probably, 9-14, got in line and just went in front of everybody, yes, they did have a wristband, but only one person was wearing it. An asian woman who barely spoke english saw this and decided to join them. When they got to me, I let them go, but they decided to stop right in front of me.

 

I saw a few people take advantage of the people with types of disorders while I was there. They just pretended to be their friends while in line, but abandon them when the ride is over.

 

I could be wrong but it sounds like they were regular line cutters. Dorney's policy is that if you have more than 2 people in your group, the disabled person and 1 other person can wait on a bench somewhere while the rest of the group has to wait in the line and they meet up on the station platform. If you only have 2 people, they give you a boarding time to return based on the length of the line.

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