A handicap ramp in front of a Fountain family's house is in the middle of a neighborhood squabble.
Vincent and Heidi Giesegh say their neighbors are threatening legal action if they don't remove the ramp. They say the next door couple is worried that the ramp will hurt the value of their home. The Giesegh's say they need it for their 16 year old daughter Kirsten who has Cerebral Palsy.
"As she goes into her spastic modes, we could just tumble down the stairs and both of us could get massively hurt," said Heidi Giesegh.
The Giesegh's neighborhood doesn't have an HOA, and the family says the City of Fountain told them it was ok to install the ramp and widen their driveway for a handicap van. 11 News went next door to get the neighbor's side of the story and they told us no comment.
This is an honest example of how the system is set up to value money over people.
It might be easy to think of the neighbor's as the ones to blame for their 'callousness' or 'apathy' when, in truth, a (subjectively) eyesore of a ramp in the neighbor's front yard may very well decrease their property values.
(One would have to see some of the fallen down rickety ramps that have been built in formerly affluent neighborhoods to understand how this can be a detriment to property values.)
Despite this, people with disabilities (like any other people) deserve and have a right to make their home as safe as they can.
It may be easy to judge the neighbors for wanting the ramp to go away because we are only the observers and not the ones with the financial investment in the home. And what a shame to be players in a game that comes down to money versus compassion.