Wednesday, September 27, 1989
On the fourth day of the 1989 ADAPT fall action – after the march – after the two-day takeover of the Federal Building – after receiving the support of President Bush – ADAPTers marched to the Greyhound Depot and shut down all entrances and exits. At one time during this effort, up to 20 buses were held in place.
On the right, Claude Holcomb, of Hartford, Connecticut, reflects the passion of ADAPT actions such as these. Around him, activists chanted, “We Will Ride!” and “Access! Not Excuses!” as they handed out flyers to passengers, passers by, and press. The action virtually stopped all travel to the east coast for four hours and sent ripples of delay out west. Passengers understood and most took the delay in stride. One, at first irate, ended up supporting the effort, buying the protesters soda, candy, and cigarettes.
Behind the scenes, ADAPT leaders negotiated with members of Atlanta Greyhound and their corporate offices in Dallas who said they supported the ADA in all aspects “except transportation.” At this point, negotiations stalled and arrests began. 26 were arrested, many having to be cut loose by Atlanta police as they were chained and locked to each other and to the steering wheels of seized buses. All 26 received suspended sentences.
With three successful actions in Atlanta in one week, the efforts of ADAPT and other organizations added greatly to the push for equality, access, and passage of the Americans with Disability Act.