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See reader questions & answers on this topic! - Help others by sharing your knowledge
	Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about Resources for Big Folks 

This document contains information about resources for fat people
(other than on-line resources, organizations, publications, and clothing
-- these are covered in other FAQs). If you don't find what you're
looking for here, try one of the related FAQs (see question F1 for a complete list).


Updated October 2000



SECTION A:  FAQ about resources for big folks in Canada
a1)	Are there therapists or workshops offering information about
	body image, alternatives to dieting, etc.?
A2)	What about amusement parks for big folks?
a3)	Dating services for big folks?

SECTION B:  FAQ about resources for big folks in New Zealand
b1)	Where can I get clothes for large folks?

SECTION C:  FAQ about resources for big folks in the U.K.
c1)	What about recreation-type things for big folks?
c2)	Where can I get anti-diet cards?
c3)	What other services are available for large folks?

SECTION D:  FAQ about resources for big folks in the U.S.
d1)	What airlines treat fat people well?
d2)	What furniture works well for big folks?
d3)	What about recreation-type things for big folks?
d4)	Where can I get product X made for a large person?
d5)	Are there therapists or workshops offering information about
	body image, alternatives to dieting, etc.?
d6)	What legal remedies are there for discrimination on the basis
	of weight and medical mistreatment of fat people?
d7)	Are there modeling agencies for large folks?

SECTION E: Information about this FAQ
e1)	Are there other related FAQs?
e2)	Posting information
e3)	Contributors


SECTION A:  FAQ about resources for big folks in Canada

a1)	Are there therapists or workshops offering information about
	body image, alternatives to dieting, etc.?

Beyond Dieting
	Rhonda Zabrodski, BSW, RSW
	c/0 101
	83 Deerpoint Rd SE
	Calgary, Alberta T2J 6W5
	Phone: (403) 271-1311 or (403) 265-4980
	Fax: (403) 225-1276
	Weekly "psycho-educational group" focusing on diet education,
	self-esteem and body image, and relationship with food. Not a
	diet or weight loss group. Pre-screening interviews. 

Helena Spring
        Phone: (416) 861-0217
	Helena Spring, R.N., of Canada Wyde offers phone counseling for
        people of size.

Hugs International, Inc.
	Linda Omichinsky, RD
	Box 102 A, RR #3
	Portage La Prairie Manitoba R1N 3A3
	Phone: (204) 428-3432             
	Workshops based on Omichinsky's book *You Count, Calories Don't*.

Stop Dieting, Inc
	Janet Polivy, Ph.D.
	Dept. of Psychiatry and Psychology
	University of Toronto
	Toronto, Ontario
	Work Phone: (416) 968-3942 
	Fax: (905) 569-4326        
	Anti-diet workshops based on Polivy's research as a scientist
	studying obesity, dieting, and health.

	620 Jarvis Street
	Suite 1023
	Toronto, Ontario M4Y 2R8
	Phone: (416) 964-0292 or (800) 663-9102 (toll free in Canada & U.S.)
	Email: or
	Infobot: (email to get information packet)
	Self-acceptance and self-esteem seminars for large women explore
	ways in which fat women are marginalized and stigmatized and
	ways to combat the stigma and rebuild self-esteem. 


A2)	What about amusement parks for big folks?

A 265 lb woman had no problems. Another similar-sized woman complained
that the chest restraints were a bit too confining on the standing roller

A3)	Dating services for big folks?
Sizeable Encounters Ltd.
	Elaine Shusterman
	1235 Bay Street, Toronto, Ontario
	Phone: (416) 657-2128 and (905) 731-1366 
	Dating service for above-average sized singles and their
	admirers. $325 for 6 months, $499 for 1 year. $100 up front,
	balance upon agreement to an introduction. Check for specials.
	Low risk. No blind dates.


SECTION B:  FAQ about resources for big folks in New Zealand

B1)	Where can I get clothes for large folks?

	Department store that carries large size men's clothing --
	some up to size 6XL. 

Fashion Factory
	PO Box 7216
	Phone: (03) 379-7323
	Fax: (03) 379-7383

House of Heather
	101 First Avenue
	Phone: (07) 578-3376
	Fax: (07) 578-3360

Rubens Collection
	Petal Accents
	Tauranga Airport
	Phone: (07) 575-9404
	Fax: (07) 575-9404

Raphaels Corporation Ltd
	PO Box 21635
	Phone: 0800 886 886
	Fax: 0800 887 887


SECTION C:  FAQ about resources for big folks in the U.K.

c1)	What about recreation-type things for big folks?

Planet Big Girl
	PO Box 4110
	London  SE15 4LR
	Phone: 0171 639 0914 or 0171 635 7071
	Nightclub in London that caters to large folks and their
	admirers. They are in the basement of Equinox (in Leicester
	Square), and have events on the first Thursday of each month
	(and possibly other days as well).  


c2)	Where can I get anti-diet cards?

Diet Breakers
	Church Cottage
	Barford St Michael
	Banbury Oxon OX15 0UA
	Phone: 0181 693 7070 
	Fax: 0181 693 7177
	Diet Breakers puts out a couple of anti-diet postcards
	illustrated by Jacky Fleming.  They have pictures of a woman
	engaged in anti-diet behavior (throwing out her diet book,
	seeing through the con of diet books), and statistics about
	dieting in the UK. 


D3)	What other services are available for large folks?

88 - Big in Pictures
        109 Wareham Road
        Corfe Mullen
        Wimbourne, Dorset BH21 3JZ
        Phone: 01860 356149
        Makeover photography for large ladies, by larger ladies; studio
	quality, home visits.

Angela Sandler AMIFC
        Phone: 0181 954 2113
        Appearance specialist -- personal & corporate image consultant.
	Offers "Large is lovely" workshops.

Chubby Companions
        21 Ulundi Street
        Radcliffe, Greater Manchester M26 3AN
        Phone: 0161 724 6791
        Dating service. Competitive rates, confidentiality. Lancashire
	area. Unlimited introductions.

Le Grande Weekend
        Marlene and Kyrsia
        38 Westbury Lodge Close
        Pinner, Middlesex, HA5 3FG
        Luxury weekends for large ladies. 

Plump Partners Dating Agency
	Sandy Millington
        8 Sealand Avenue
        Holywell Clwyd CH8 7BU
        Phone: 01352 715909
        National Dating agency for those who are plump or prefer a plump

        PO Box 533
        London SW6 2RQ
        Top-heavy ladies write about bust problems. Practical
	hints/advice and free newsletter.


SECTION D:  FAQ about resources for big folks in the U.S.

d1)	What airlines treat fat people well?

This section is a compilation of comments made by various people on
s.s.f-a or a.s.b-f about various airlines. It's by no means exhaustive.
Check out the August 1995 issue of Consumer Reports, which compares
airline seat widths on various aircraft.

American Airlines/American Eagle 
	Friendly to big folks. If you ask, they will try to place an
	empty seat beside you (by "blocking" the seat on the computer).
	You may need to ask ahead for a seat belt extender. Makes very
	large people purchase two seats.

	Friendly to big folks.

	Used to be generally thought friendly to big folks, but lately
	there have been complaints. One person who was large and
	disabled said she was refused a seat ("insurance requirements"
	were cited) after twice calling Delta to explain her special
	needs and being assured there would be no problem. Another
	person complained they were unresponsive to her need for a seat
	with an armrest that could be raised.

	Friendly to big folks. Polite. Flight attendants are helpful and
	ask if you need a seat belt extender.

Midwest Express
	They have four-across seating (rather than the standard
	five-across) on their DC-9s/MD-80s. The seats are all basically
	as wide as first class seats. Their major hub is in Milwaukee,
	and they fly cross-country.

Northwest Airlines
	Gracious about seat belt extenders.

Polynesian Airlines
	Very friendly to big folks. Go out of their way to make you
	comfortable, arrange for extra seats.

Reno Air
	Friendly to big folks. Good about seating you in a comfortable

Southwest Airlines
	Unfriendly to big folks.  Have been known to fly someone to a
	connecting city, and then decide that the person is too fat for
	a single seat, and then demand that the person buy another seat
	to continue their journey. Some people have had OK experiences
	with them.

	Friendly to big folks. Accommodating and discreet about
	extenders. Friendly counter staff.

United Airlines
	Friendly to big folks. But were in the news a while back for
	being obnoxious about weight limits for flight attendants.

US Air	
	Friendly to big folks. NAAFA trained and very respectful and
	kind about size issues. Makes very large people purchase two
	seats. Discreet about seatbelt extenders, good about seating
	people next to empty seats, upgrading to first for a small fee. 


d2)	What furniture works well for big folks?

Everyone has different likes/dislikes in furniture. This section is
intended to provide information about what other big folks have found
works for them. 

With regard to beds in particular, and furniture in general, you may
want to consider a bed (or box springs or whatnot) guaranteed for
several years, so that if it doesn't hold up, you can have it replaced

Action Lane furniture 
	Tupelo, Mississippi 
	Web site:
	Offers the ComfortKing recliner. It reclines to 80 inches and
	has a 24-inch seat. It's made of tempered steel and weighs 160
	pounds instead of the usual 110-120 pounds. 

	297 High St.
	Dedham, MA 02026-9135 
	Phone: (800) 225-2610 
	Fax: (617) 329-8392 
	Ergonomic office furniture and equipment. Several office chairs
	designed for big folks up to 500 pounds. One model is called
	the Triton and costs around $450. Stools and chairs for labs or
	manufacturing. Lumbar support belts up to 75". Specifications
	are clear in the catalog. Catalog is $10 if you're calling on
	your own behalf, free if you're calling on behalf of an

Big Wyoming Big Bed & Furniture Co. 
	Casper Wy.  
	Email: 102442.3165@CompuServe.COM 
	Furniture and beds for tall and big people.

	Phone: 800-597-0246, 419-832-1089 
	Carries a plus-size folding chair and a plus-size cafeteria
	chair. You can purchase from the manufacturer, but it's
	sometimes cheaper to go through a local dealer. Biofit can give
	you the name(s) of dealers in your area.

Boyd Flotation Systems
	Maker of waterbeds. Their beds consist of several tubes filled
	with water, rather than one big bag of water.  

	Portable outdoor chair. "Cost me about $25.00, but it's never
	even hinted at collapsing under my 340 lbs, and it's got a WIDE
	seat, to boot. It's made so that it folds down and inward rather
	than up, so the strongest parts are the support, and it's got
	support connecting the legs for more strength. Yet it's made of
	aluminum and ripstop nylon so it's light, and folds down so well
	I can sling it over my shoulder and walk with it. I got mine at
	Fred Meyer, but you could probably find one at any discount-type
	store with a camping department (K-Mart, Target, etc.)." 
	As of June 2000, the URL for the Colman captain's chair is 

Craftmatic bed 
	Bed that you can raise and lower (like in hospitals). Drive
	motor is guaranteed for three years, mattress and foundation is
	guaranteed for 25 years. Foundation is made with a steel
	undercarriage. Two twinsized beds can hook together at the
	foundation to make a kingsize with two sides that raise and
	lower independently. In Canada, one couple paid $2245 for one
	twin bed.  

C.R. Laine 
	(704) 328 1831
	Offers furniture (such as a recliner) made for big and tall

	Danish furniture store chain. They make "huge and soft" couches
	that are large enough for two mid-size-ish big folks to lie on
	and spoon.

	2400 Sterling Avenue, Elkhart, IN 46516 * Phone: (219) 293-0621
	Fax: (219) 294-6176 
	They carry executive chairs are at least 30" wide and certified
	to hold up to 500 lbs and a task chair that is about 33" wide
	and is certified to hold up to 850lbs. Chairs are structurally
	designed to accommodate large/heavy people.

	They make somewhat expensive box springs and mattresses that
	hold up well. 

Ethan Allen
	Offers the "chair and a half," a chair approximately 33 inches
	in width.

Herman Miller
	offers the
	Aeron chair: high backed, wide bottomed, arms that swing out.
	Seat made of netting for air circulation. Many different
	adjustments, including one for the small of your back. Several
	sizes available. List price is $999, but you can get it for $699
	at One person wrote: "Size c is fine for me at
	350+ lbs and 6'5"." Also offers Ergon Extra Chair, available at
	a lot of office supply stores, approximately $700 to $900.
	Designed for office workers up to 6', 7" in height who weigh up
	to 500 lbs. Larger seat and back, extra durability through more
	heavily enforced mechanics, and extra comfort in its deeper
	cushions. Adjustments: knee tilt, forward seat angle adjustment,
	and height adjustable back and arms. 12-year warranty. 

Hickory Chair 
	Offers furniture (such as a recliner or "chair and a half")
	suitable for big and tall folks.

	(888) FOR-LANE 
	Offers furniture (such as a recliner) for big and tall folks.

	(800) 625-3245 
	Offers the Summit Series of large-size "chair-and-a-half" chairs
	and recliners.

Jerry McRoy
	Greenville, NC
	Phone: (919) 756-3161 (answering machine)
	Waterbed dealer who has access to metal bed frames with 9 legs,
	designed for king/queen softsided waterbeds, but also for use
	with a regular mattress.

Office Depot 
	Offers a comfortable, sturdy office chair made by the Global
	Upholestry Co. Cost about $100. 

Office World
	Web site:
	They have excellent (although expensive) office chairs for large
	and supersized people (including the Ergon 3 by Herman Miller,
	see above).

	Web site:
	One person reports they can make patio/outdoor furniture that
	can support high weights and make furniture to order.

Quik Lok 
	Not-too-unwieldy seat intended to be a portable stool for
	electronic keyboardists. With very heavy frames, a padded seat,
	and collapsible construction. You can get them at many music
	stores. One place to see them online is:

	Offers What-A-Beach Chair, rated to 400 lbs., $32.00. Low to the
	ground. They also have What-A-Chair, which goes to 500 lbs. Item
	# F24925. Both of these fold up and are very sturdy.

Sealy Posturepedic
	Their grade 3 or 4 mattresses seem to work well for large folks.
	Some of their box springs have steel beams instead of wood.
	Their higher end products are guaranteed for a long time, so you
	can get them replaced if they don't live up to what they should.
	One 360 pound person bought a Sealy Posturepedic that broke
	three weeks after he got it. Possibly a bad box-spring. They are
	replacing the mattress.

	They make mostly indestructible bed frames with 6 legs. Metal
	frames may be sturdier than wooden frames, but it probably
	depends on the construction of the frame. They also make good

	offers a mattress that combines all natural foam (latex) with a
	coil system and can be constructed to accommodate two people
	with different needs. 

Smith Industries ~ Natural Tree Furniture
	Web site 
	Annie and Ray Smith run this company. Annie wrote to me to point
	out: "We have quite a few Large HumanBeans, friends and
	customers, we cater to in the furniture department.  All we'd
	need to know is specifications." They make environmentally
	responsible furniture out of reclaimed, naturally felled trees
	and branches, kiln dried using mortise and tenon joinery
	to guarantee quality and integrity. Custom orders welcomed. 

	They make an oversize lawn/lounge chair that was comfy for one
	400-pound person.

	They offer the Steelcase Criterion Plus. "The seat is 26"
	across, and my 460 lb body with 72" hips fits in it perfectly.
	I've been using it for almost 3 years now, and it's holding up
	well. It cost somewhere between $800-$1000."

	Carries big and tall task and executive chairs for people
	between 300 and 500 lbs.

This End Up 
	PO Box 2020
	Richmond, VA 23216-2020 
	Phone: (800) 627-5161
	Mall retail chain and mail order catalog. They make very sturdy
	furniture (including beds and couches).

	Chain store offers sturdy, inexpensive double camping chairs
	called "A Chair and a Half". They fold up like a regular lawn
	chair and have a drink holder. They cost about $30 and support
	at least 350 pounds.


d3)	What about recreation-type things for big folks?


Women of Substance Health Spa is a newly opened health club for women of
all sizes, located in Redwood City, CA. They have no scales and do not
promote measurement as a method of determining health or fitness. 363 C
Main Street, Redwood City. Phone: (415) 369-6626. Fat-friendly workout
equipment and exercise classes, pool, jacuzzi, massage.

In New York City, there are two clubs that cater to large folks. 
Large Encounters (212-836-9000 or 516-763-6100) runs Friday night dance
parties about three times a month at various locations in Manhattan,
Queens, and Long Island. 
Goddesses (718-456-9119) runs dance parties every other Saturday at a
Manhattan club called Cafe 44.

The Chunkendale dancers are large guys who parody the Chippendales
dancers. Last I heard, Chippendales was suing for trademark


Club 24 (apparently affiliated with Dimensions magazine) sponsers
cruises for large women and their male partners. You can reach them at


Black's Beach in San Diego, CA
	Many "beautiful people" hang out here, but large folks are not
	harassed or snickered at or even ignored. Apparently, the north
	and south ends of the beach tend to have the "beautiful people"
	(who may or may not remove their clothes), while the middle of
	the beach has many folks of varying body types (who usually
	remove their clothes). During the week, there are less likely to
	be gawkers.

Elysian Fields in Topanga Canyon, CA
	This nudist resort has a number of large nudists, and large
	folks are not looked at askance.

San Onofre Beach, just south of the San Diego/Orange County line
	I-5 to Basilone Road, south into the State Park. 3 miles south
	of the main gate there is a trail down to the beach. Go south on
	the beach past the last lifeguard station. Nudity officially not
	allowed, but they only enforce it if they have a complaint. "I
	am 5'10" and 265 lbs and I have _never_ felt "out of place" when
	visiting there!"

Pirate's Cove -- north of Malibu, CA, just south of Zuma Beach
	Nude sunbathing and swimming that is big-folk friendly.

Sandy Hook in New Jersey
	Gunnison Beach is clothing optional and very fat friendly.
	Diverse body types. Queer folks hang out on the south end of the


Consensus here is that theme parks should place samples of the cars they
use for the rides where you queue up for the rides. Then anyone who
wasn't sure they would fit in the car could sit in the sample car, and
see if it would work. Alas, theme parks do not do this yet. (So suggest
it to them when you go to visit.)

In the meantime, here's what some big folks found when they visited
various theme parks. You're probably not shaped exactly the same as the
people whose opinions are gathered here. And, depending on how your
weight is distributed and how the ride is set up, you may fit on rides
that people who weigh less than you don't fit on. So don't take any of
this as gospel.

Adventure World in suburban Washington DC (Largo, Maryland.)
	A ride called the Rainbow featured slides of different colors
	and heights. "About 2/3 of the way up the narrow stair, a sign
	was posted with a weight limit [...]. By the time one is in a
	position to see the sign, one has already climbed a large part
	of the way up, and the people in line behind one have also
	acsended, blocking the stairway. There is no escape stair.[...]
	I didn't want to inconvenience all the people in line behind me
	-- and I wanted to ride the big slide. So I said to my husband
	"I'm sure it will be fine" and continued up. There had to be
	some leeway in the weight limit, right? I mean, lots of men
	don't evem know their weight... Anyway, you'll be happy to hear
	that the slide didn't break under my weight - no one was injured
	or even embarrassed. BUT my weight meant that I got quite a
	great deal of MOMENTUM going on the way down the slide.[...] It
	would have been much better, more responsible policy to post the
	weight restrictions at the entrance to the ride itself. The park
	has been renovated and expanded since our visit - the rainbow
	slide may not even be there any more. But I did learn that
	weight limits are posted for a reason." 

Boardwalk in Santa Cruz, CA
	One person was asked to get off a roller coaster in front of
	everybody because the bar would not go down. Another person
	(5'3, and around 300 lbs) tried to ride the Big Dipper
	rollercoaster, was asked to get off the ride, and was refused a

Busch Gardens in Williamsburg, VA
	Of the three coasters, Big Bad Wolf is probably the roomiest,
	followed by the Loch Ness Monster, and then the Drachen Fire.
	The Drachen Fire is not very friendly to people over 5'6" tall.
	The Alpengeist has a maximum girth of 48", the Apollo's Chariot
	has a maximum girth of 52". They have a sample car sitting at
	the entrance of the Alpengeist so that you can see if you will
	fit before you get into line. The operators are helpful and do
	not rush you. 

Cedar Point amusement park in OH
	People over 6'5" or having over a 50 inch waist or a very large
	bust or chest may have problems with the Raptor. People with
	over a 50 inch waist may have problems with the Mean Streak, the
	Corkscrew, and the Magnum 200XL. People with over a 60 inch
	waist may have problems with the Iron Dragon, the Blue Streak,
	and the Gemini. All the water rides and standard rides should
	accommodate folks with less than a 60" waist.

Disneyworld in FL
	A size 28-30W woman fit on all the rides without any problem.
	One 28-30W person found the inner tube rides (other than the
	Lazy River) a bit difficult -- the inner tube kept sinking down
	into the water, and she found herself scraping the bottom a lot
	-- she still found it fun. They have scuba jackets for the Shark
	Reef in sizes up to 28-30W. Star Tours and Body Wars were a
	little snug. Clothes in gift shops go up to size 4X. 
	For much more about Walt Disney World theme parks, see below.

Disneyland in CA

	300+, 410lb, 310lb, and 3X people fit through all the turnstiles
	and fit on every single ride without problems. One woman
	complained that the rocket jets were uncomfortable and some of
	the gates were smallish, and recommended not sitting in the
	front car of Space Mountain. Disney did not complain that she
	needed to take a whole seat meant for two. Many of the rides
	are accessible for much larger folks as well (i.e., Pirates of
	the Caribbean, Splash Mount, Jungle Boat, and Matterhorn). Star
	Tours may not be entirely comfortable; it has theater-type
	seats. One person needed a seatbelt extender for Star Tours and
	they provided it without a fuss. And on Main St., the Clothier
	store, the Disney Emporium, and Tomorrowland all have large-size
	clothing (some up to 8X). The seats in MGM Studios were somewhat
	uncomfortable for one person. One person couldn't fit through
	the turnstiles and ended up lifting himself over them.
	Disneyland is very accommodating to people with physical
	limitations and will assist people in getting on and off the
	rides. They have wheelchairs available for a small deposit.  
	For more about Walt Disney theme parks, see below.

Great America in Santa Clara, CA
	One woman didn't fit on one of the rides, and they gave her and
	her partner passes to go to the head of the line on any other
	ride (to make up for the fact that she waited all that time for
	the first ride). A 5'4" 220-lb size 18-24 woman fit on all the rides, 
	but just barely on the wooden rollercoaster. A 5'7" 340 lb.
	person could not fit on anything, except one rollercoaster (not
	the wooden one, presumably).

Kennywood Park in Pittsburgh, PA.  
	One reader was humiliated by ride staff.

King's Island in Cincinatti, OH
	A size 20W-22W woman visited here and found all of the coasters
	comfortable. The roomiest was Top Gun, and one coaster was a
	little snug. The Flight Commander ride had a sign saying that
	"especially large people" might not be able to ride, but our
	intrepid tester had no problems. On the other hand, another
	woman (size 18W or so) couldn't fit on several of the rides. A
	400+ pound man was comfortable in the Skylab and short log flume
	water rides.

Knott's Berry Farm
	A supersized woman had no problem on any of the rides she went

	Another person warns that many of the rides, with the exception
	of the log flume and the California River Country Raft Ride, are
	not size friendly, including the three major roller coasters.
	One of the roller coasters (Montezuma's Revenge?) may be bad for
	people with back or neck problems. ("starts on a short section
	of track, catapults you forward, through a loop to a near
	vertical incline at which you fall and reverse the process
	passing through the start station and going to another near
	vertical incline and you then fall back forward and stop in the
	station") The fried chicken dinner at the restaurant is

Lagoon in Farmington, UT
	One person had a bad experience with a roller coaster -- the bar
	went down but the person was pinned very uncomfortably and had a
	hard time getting the bar to release.  

Paramounts Carowinds
	A size 28W-30W woman had problems fitting in the safety devices
	of some rides, but always fit and was able to ride without too
	much discomfort.

Six Flags in Georgia
	A size 28W-30W woman had problems fitting in the safety devices
	of some rides, but always fit and was able to ride without too
	much discomfort.

Six Flags Magic Mountain
	Two people reported bad experiences. One concerned the roller
	coaster. Nothing was posted about a size limit, but the safety
	bar would not lock and the person was asked to leave the ride.
	One person commented that the amusement park is very hilly.

	One 300 lb. person fit onto the Batman and Superman rides.

Six Flags Over Texas
	Two mid-sized people had trouble getting into the Texas Giant ride.
	However, one person who is approximately 280 lbs and 58" girth
	did not have a problem here except for "occasionally a tight

Wild Bills at Stateline, NV 
	Roller coaster is reported to be a very tight fit.

Water theme parks
	Large folks tend to do well at water theme parks. The more
	surface area you have, the better you can dam water up behind
	you, the faster you can go. And often there are people with a
	wide range of body types at water theme parks.

One poster reported that at 6'7" and 400 lbs, height was more of a
problem than weight and recommended the second row of most rides as
having more leg room. "On the water rides be sure to seat in the middle
(left and right), we had a boat full of couples all seating on one side,
and started to take on water."

The following description of Disney parks is contributed by (note: this email address no longer works):

Because of the questions regarding rides at Walt Disney World, I called
and spoke with a great woman who helped me go through each of the parks
and "size up" (so to speak!) the rides at all three Disney Parks. Below
is the compilation of what I can offer as far as info re: descriptions
of rides and shows goes.  Know, too,that *your* judgement is the
ultimate guide. I merely offer suggestions. 

	ts  = theatre seats 
	bs  = bench seats 
	lb  = low bars (lower deeply into lap)
	hb  = high bars (do not lower into lap, or lower slightly)
	ss  = small space
	w   = walking show, self paced (wheelchairs allowed)
	s   = standing show (wheelchairs allowed)
	nws = no wheelchair space, but handicapped accessible

All shows have handicapped access and all ts and bs locations (except
those designated "nws"... no wheelchair spaces) have wheelchair spaces,
never having to leave the wheelchair, and a place for companion as well.
More info on wheelchairs below. 

Ride                            Seat type     Description
Astro Orbiter                   lb/ts         jerky simulator ride
Space Mountain                  lb/ss         roller coaster
Wedway People Mover             hb/bs/nws     gentle sit down ride
Delta DreamFlight               hb            gentle sit down ride
Time Keeper                     s             show/movie?
Carousel of Progress            ts            show

Grand Prix Raceway              bs/ss         gentle ride
Dumbo Flying Elephants          lb/ss         kids' ride
Carousel Horses                 bs/horses     gentle ride
It's a Small World              bs/nws        gentle ride
Tea Cups                        bs(round)     twirly ride
Mr. Toad's Wild Ride            bs/hb         ride
Legend of Lion King             ts            show
Skyway                          700 lb limit  sky ride

Hall of Presidents              ts            show (standing pre-show)
Haunted Mansion                 bs/hb/nws     gentle ride (standing pre-show)
Mike Fink Keel Boats            bs            gentle ride
Tom Sawyers Island              w             (short standing barge ride) 

Splash Mountain                 lb/ss         roller coaster
Big Thunder Mountain            lb/ss         roller coaster
Country Bear Jamboree           bs            show
Railroad Ride                   bs            gentle sit down ride
Jungle Cruise                   bs            gentle boat ride

Pirates of the Carribean        bs/nws        boat ride-8 foot "waterfall"
Swiss Family Treehouse          w             walking uphill/downhill 
Enchanted Tiki Room             bs            show (standing pre-show)

Main Street Cinema              ts            movie

Ride                            Seat type     Description
Spaceship Earth                 hb            gentle ride
The Living Seas                 bs/w          short ride
The Land                        bs/nws        gentle boat ride 
Journey to Imagination          lb/w          several activities
Universe of Energy              bs            gentle boat-like ride
Wonders of Life                 lb/ss         ride
Cranium Command                 bs            show
Making of Me                    bs            movie
Body Wars                       lb/ts         jerky flight simulator

Mexico                          hb/bs/nws     gentle boat ride
China                           s             CircleVision movie
Norway                          lb            faster boat ride
                                              2 drops down "waterfalls"
Morocco (no rides)
Germany (no rides)
Italy (no rides)
Japan (no rides)
United States                   ts            show (arrive early for seating)
France                          s             CircleVision movie
Canada                          s             CircleVision movie

Ride                            Seat type     Description
Tower of Terror                 bs/hb         13 story drop
Muppet Show                     ts            show
Beauty and the Beast            bs            show
Little Mermaid                  ts            show
Magic of Disney Animation       w             demonstrations
Backstage Tour                  tram ride/bs  demonstrations
Great Movie Rides               bs            show
Hunchback of Notre Dame         bs            show
Star Tours                      lb/ts         jerky flight simulator
Monster Sound Show              ts            show
Indiana Jones Spectacular       bs            show

There is ample wheelchair parking outside each park. In MGM you need to
show a wheelchair sticker, otherwise it is the honor system. Trams,
monorails, and boats are completely accessible, their being used to get
you from the parking area to the parks.

Wheelchairs, both standard and electric, can be rented each day, but
must stay in the park they were rented in, even with multi-park passes.
The wheelchair rental areas are directly inside each parks' gates (Magic
Kingdom's is towards the middle, EPCOT's is to the far left, and MGM's
is also to the far left). Standard wheelchairs are $6 a day, no deposit.
The electric ones are $30 a day and $20 refundable deposit when you
return the chair. (the electric ones are *well* worth the money!
Especially in EPCOT where there are hills in several places.) A new
policy! Wheelchairs are *first come, first served"! They no longer take
reservations. We always rent a stroller as well for the walking person
to push, allowing us to dump all the purses, bags, etc. in. First come,
first served, they are $6 a day, with $1 refund when you return it.

One never needs to go through turnstiles... from the front entrance to
any ride. There are gates that swing open, simply ask the attendant (or
make yourself at home and open it yourself, like I do!).

All types of modified diets are honored at Walt Disney World... in parks
(see below), restaurants, and hotels... from Kosher, vegan, and low-fat
to diabetic, ovo-lacto vegetarian, and kids' meals.

In the Magic Kingdom, there is a vegetarian fast food restaurant in
Tomorrowland. The fast food places are eat what is on the menu, but sit
down places (with backstage chefs) can cook anything to match your
dietary needs... simply ask your server.

In EPCOT, there are wonderful places to eat. Canada has a cafeteria. The
Living Seas has the most expensive food, but most spectacular dining
room, set under the aquarium, dinner swimming all around as you eat!
Most restaurants have several choices of meals that fit in with varying
diet plans. If not, ask the server for what you need.

In MGM, there are fast food and dining rooms, including a cafeteria
(that is eat what is there). The dining rooms can cater to your needs.

The majority of wheelchairs at the Disney parks are the regular sized,
but they *do* have several of the larger sized ones. The electric
wheelchairs have arms that rise on one side.

Also, the chairs in every restaurant that I can think of have no arms. I
am sure if there are arms on chairs, there are also chairs without arms

The restrooms all have handicapped stalls, of course... and I have been
able to fit in most stalls at 330 pounds.

If you ever have a problem when gently asking for your needs, ask to
speak to a supervisor, and they can help... either by getting you what
you need, or directing you to a place where your needs can be met.

For further questions you can call Walt Disney World at 407-824-4321.


d4)	Where can I get product X made for a large person?

Air Physics Corp
	Phoenix, AZ
	Phone: (800) 553-0353
	Chairs that assist people in standing up. One design is for
	large people. It is 27" wide, can lift over 800 lbs, and costs
	$895. They sell another chair rated up to 400 lbs, and a lift
	seat that can be strapped to a regular chair. If a doctor
	prescribes a lift chair for you, your health insurance may pay
	part of the cost. They also sell the large chairs alone without
	the lift mechanism.

American Health Supplies Inc.
	Web site:
	Vast catalog of medical equipment and home health aids.
	Most items have pictures, describe size and weight limits.

	PO Box 116
	Bearsville, NY 12409
	Phone: (914) 679-3316
	Fax: (914) 679-1206
	Amplestuff doesn't have a web site but you can order a catalog
	Catalog with over 100 items for plus- and supersize woman and
	men such as: large clothes hangers, airline seatbelt extenders,
	books/videos, fanny packs, health/hygiene products, wider socks,
	and the consumer newsletter Ample Shopper. 

Apria (formerly Homedco)
	Medical equipment company reported by a fat person with sleep
	apnea to be good to work with.  

Beam balance scales and counterweights

Brace Center
	2285 N.W. Loop
	Stephenville TX 76401
	(254) 965-9092
	1600 Central Drive
	Bedford, Texas   76022
	Phone 877-272-2348 
	Fax (254)-965-9644
	Large selection of all sizes. Easy to work with via phone,
	online or retail locations.

CJ's International
	4175 Pepperwood Trail
	Minnetonka, MN 55305-4915 
	Phone: (800) 538-8394
	Austrian crystal tennis bracelets for people with large wrists,
	$2.50 per inch plus shipping and handling.

ConvaQuip Health Care Products
	P.O. Box 3417
	Abilene, Texas 79604
	Phone: (800) 637-8436, (915) 677-4177
	Fax: (915) 677-7217
	Web site:
	Heavy-duty convalescent aids and medical equipment -- walkers,
	canes, crutches, commodes, shower and bath chairs. 

	PO Box 40
	Hanover, PA 17333-0040
	Inexpensive large bath sheets (36" x 66").

Easy Rider Pedal Extensions
	PO Box 251677 
	Glendale, CA 91225-1677 
	Phone: 818-247-9246
	FAX: 818-247-3329  
	Prices range between $60 and $75 per extender. They can be
	installed using a screwdriver and socket wrench. They can be
	used on most vehicles (including temporarily on rental cars). 

Electric Mobility  
	Phone: 800-MOBILITY
	Web site:
	Offers a motorized scooter, Rascal, that's rated to 450 lbs. It
	is modular so repairs are not expensive. It can be taken apart
	and put in the trunk of a car. An extra-wide (22") seat is
	available. The armrests flip up, or you can remove the entire
	armrest assembly. Cost is around $3500, including the extra-wide
	chair. Also offers motoroized scooter models called Chauffeur
	with weight limits of 450-600, depending on the model. One
	person complained the 600-pound model brok frequently. Others
	say the Chauffer is sturdier than the Rascal. One person reports
	that her model has a longer base (good for long legs) and "The
	weight limit is 450, but the company told me that it would be
	fine of you were a bit over that." The Chauffeur MX model is
	rated for 450 lbs and the cost is about $2,300, including an
	extra-width foot plate. It's a 3 wheeler, very stable. The
	tiller (steering column) is adjustable to accommodate big
	bellies. Electric Mobility doesn't rent scooters and don't
	generally have any heavy duty scooters available for sale used. 

	Makes customized wheelchairs. One person has one with a weight
	capacity of 500 lbs. and a 20" seat. 

Everest & Jennings
	Offers wheelchairs for people weighing up to 400 pounds. Various
	sites on the web; search on "Everest Jennings" in Yahoo or

Greedy Dyke Productions
	2400 Rio Grande NW, #1-110
	Albuquerque, NM  87104
	Phone: (505) 345-8739
	Dildo harnesses that fit folks with large legs (one size for
	hips under 55" and one size for hips over 55").

King Size
	PO Box 9115
	Hingham, MA  02043
	Phone: (800) 846-1600
	Large-size rain gear that is more or less unisex. Extra-large
	umbrellas, ties, and fanny packs.

	Has a motorized wheelchair/scooter rated to 450. One person
	wrote "But the 300lb one I tested had so much punch I considered
	it, even though I am 350." The prices range $3500-$5000. The
	lifts for the car add another $2000. 

Laughing Sisters
	4514 Manitou Way
	San Diego, CA  92117	
	Phone: (619) 272-1976
	They make plastic hangers 19" wide. (Regular hangers are 14"
	wide.) Clothes won't slide off these hangers and won't get funny
	lumps on the shoulder seams from hangers too narrow to reach the

Masterlink Marketing
	Fax: (716) 675-1610 
	They make an adjuster for auto seatbelts called Master Design.
	You clip it to the seatbelt by the latch, and it makes the
	shoulder belt sit lower.

Northwest Kayaks Inc.
	Offers a kayak called a Cadence, which has a load capacity of
	455 lbs and has an opening made for larger people.  

Mour To Dri
	Reported out of business Mar01

Optiway Technology, Inc. 
	500 Norfinch Dr., 
	Downsview, Ontario, Canada M3N 1Y4
	Phone: 800-514-7061 
	Fax: (416)739-6622 
	Offers Optiway/Fortress 2001 LX4 Scooter. Can be modified both
	for weight and to make it more powerful on hills. The 4 wheels
	are much more stable (less likely to fall over) than the 3
	wheels, which are a bit easier to maneuver. 

Palmer Industries
	Makes an electric vehicle capable of climbing hills and
	traversing rough terrain, more rugged than scooters. Cost
	$3000-$5000. For transporting, they suggest a trailer, cost
	about $500 including installation.

PDG Inc.
	Phil Mundy, Nancy Balcom
	9165 Shaughnessy Street
	Vancouver, B.C., Canada, V6P 6R9
	Phone: 604-323-9220 
	Fax: 604-323-9097
	E-mail: info@PRODGROUP.COM
	PDG Inc. is a manufacturer of wheelchairs for big and supersize
	people. They make wheelchairs in sizes up to and exceeding 30".
	U.S. distributor is: MedBloc, 700 Ensminger Road - Unit 112,
	Tonawanda, N.Y., 14150, USA, Ph: 1-888-433-6818, Fax: 1-888-433-6834 
	In Canada: Graham-Field Canada, 111 Snidercroft Road, Concord,
	Ontario, L4K 2J8, Ph: (905) 669-2381 / 1 800 387-9113, Fax:
	(905) 660-7875 / 1 800 267-0502. 
	One can also contact PDG directly. 

Royal Resources
	Vendredi Enterprises
	PO Box 220
	Camas Valley, OR  97416
	Phone: (503) 445-2330
	Information and source directory for large folks: Clothing,
	shoes, books, jewelry, magazines, furniture, sewing supplies,
	health products, sunglasses, umbrellas, dating services,
	insurance, cars, airlines, cruises, etc. Cost is $29.95.

Shower Anywhere
	Portable shower stalls and tanks. Can be modified to accommodate
	people of size. 

SIZEWise Rentals 
	Phone 800-814-9389 
	Rent medical equipment designed for large people. Rent to care
	facilities, rehab, et al. 43 locations in the U.S. Carry
	wheelchairs up to 37", shower/commode chairs to 30", power
	recliners, walkers, beds, air mattresses, trapezes, etc.
	Capacity on mobility items is 750lbs, beds and air mattresses to
	1000lb. Affiliated with Wheelchairs of Kansas (listed below).

Therapy Supplies
	Ask to speak with Peter Tippett. Please mention Helena Spring of
	Canada WYDE as reference. 
	Medical supply house. One product they sell is a solid walker
	with a wide seat, made by Gaper Products in Toronto.

	They custom-make scales as large or as small as you want them.
	Big, sturdy umbrella called "City Slicker" is large enough to
	keep almost anyone dry.

21st Century Scientific 
	Makes power wheelchairs rated up to 1000 pounds. 

Wheelchairs of Kansas
	204 W. 2nd, Ellis, KS, USA 67637 
	Telephone 1-800-537-6454 
	FAX 1-800-337-2447 
	Manufacture and sell medical equipment designed for large
	people, including wheelchairs, beds, lifts, and
	bath aides. Makes power wheelchairs up to 750 pounds 

Worldesigns Incorporated
	PO Box 355
	New York City, NY  10024
	Fanny packs in sizes up to 2X (59"-92").

XL Collection Plus
	Box 20511
	Rochester, NY  14602
	Fashion resource guide.

Wheelchairs of Kansas
	Phone: (800) 537-6454
	Free catalog.
	They rent wheelchairs up to 30" wide and will ship them within a
	few days. They also sell custom-made wheelchairs of any width.


d5)	Are there therapists or workshops offering information about
	body image, alternatives to dieting, etc.?

	Sally Strosahl
	PO Box 252
	Downers Grove IL  60515
	Phone: (630) 897-9796
	Body-size acceptance for abundant women -- workshops,
	presentations, classes and retreats. Works with health-care
	professionals who wish to become more size-informed. Cheri
	Erdman, a member, wrote her doctoral thesis on the process of
	body-size acceptance in women.

Amity Associates
	Susan Kano
	18 Holiday Road
	Wayland MA  01778
	Work Phone: (508) 358-4811             
	Home Phone: (508) 358-9611
	Offers workshops based on Kano's book *Making Peace with Food*.

Lucia Kim August, MA, MFCC
        2550 Peralta Blvd. #7
        Fremont, CA  94536
        Phone: (510) 792-5588
        Anti-dieting, demand feeding, psycho-educational approach based
	on the books *Overcoming Overeating* and *When Women Stop
	Hating Their Bodies* by Jane Hirschmann and Carol Munter. August
	is an active member of The Women's Campaign to End Body Hatred
	and Dieting. Individual therapy sessions available. Groups being
	organized. Dance/movement therapy for large women.

Lizbeth Binks, Ph.D.
	Phone: (410) 532-3080
	Size acceptance therapy. Baltimore, MD.

Kelly Bliss, M.Ed.
	Phone: 610-394-2547
	Web site:
	Provides size-accepting counseling and a nationwide video
	classes for people barely large to very large. Classes
	communicate on-line and through video: Fitness Plus (for people
	who can walk) and SuperFit (for people with mobility problems).

Body Trust
	Dayle Hayes
	2110 Overland Ave., Ste. 120
	Billings MT  59102
	Work Phone: (800) 321-9499             
	Home Phone: (406) 656-9417
	Fax: (406) 656-0124            
	Workshops and videos promoting a program called Body Trust:
	Undieting Your Way to Health and Happiness. Hayes is a member of
	the American Dietetic Association Board of Directors.

Breaking Free
	Geneen Roth
	PO Box 2852
	Santa Cruz CA  95063
	Offers workshops based on her books *Breaking Free From
	Compulsive Eating*, *Feeding The Hungry Heart*, and others.

Changing Perspectives
	Bonnie O'Brien Johnson
	PO Box 778
	Point Reyes CA  94956
	Work Phone: (415) 663-1320 
	Offers workshops on weight, body image, and health.

Nomi Dekel, MFCC
	Phone: (415) 457-3468
	Food obsession and body image groups and workshops. San
	Francisco Bay Area.

Diet/Weight Liberation
	Terry Nicholetti Garrison
	Anabel Taylor Hall, Cornell Univ
	Ithaca NY  14853
	Work Phone: (607) 257-0563 
	Local *Fed Up* groups. Working to establish a pilot program of
	peer education for high-school girls to teach size
	size-acceptance workshops to their peers.

Grady, MFCC
	Phone: (310) 804-2293
	Body image. Individual and group therapy.

	Susan Villari, MPH
	Student U. Penn. Health Services
	Box 745 HUP
	Philadelphia PA  19104-4283
	Work Phone: (215) 573-3525 
	GUIDE stands for *Guidance For Image, Dieting, and Eating*.
	Villari offers workshops for students at U. Penn.

Ellyn Herb, Ph.D.
	Phone: (408) 978-5125
	Size acceptance therapy/support group. San Jose, CA

Marcia Germaine Hutchinson, Ed.D.
	88 W Goulding St
	Sherbourn MA  01770
	Work Phone: (508) 653-3665             
	Home Phone: (508) 653-3665
	Fax: (508) 653-3665            
	Offers workshops on issues around size and body image and
	*Body-Mind* audiotapes. Hutchinson is author of the book
	*Transforming Body Image*. 

Jassy Kowalski
	Phone: (617) 776-6460
	Body image counseling groups for women over 200 pounds. Boston

Image Power for Women of Size
	Web site:
	Image consultant service by a plus-size woman, who also is
	organizing an empowerment conference/expo for women of size.

Innerworks/Food For Thought
	Melissa Popp
	2321 E Avenue H #2103
	Grand Prairie TX  75050
	Work Phone: (214) 606-1160
	Offers eating/body image support group.

Jewish Family Services Of Fort Worth
	Michele Adler, LMSW
	6801 Dan Danciger Rd
	Fort Worth TX  76133
	Work Phone: (817) 294-2660
	Fax: (817) 292-3214       
	Offers alternatives to dieting workshops.

Largely Positive, Inc.
	Carol A. Johnson, MA, President
	PO Box 17223
	Glendale WI  53217
	Johnson facilitates a support group at an area hospital to help
	build self-esteem, promote size-acceptance, and discourage
	dieting in favor of healthy, low-fat eating and regular
	exercise. Johnson is the author of *Self-Esteem Comes in All

Leslea Newman
	PO Box 815
	Northampton, MA  01061
	Work Phone: (413) 584-3865  
	Fax: (413) 584-1099         
	Newman presents workshops on eating disorders, dieting, and
	size-acceptance issues. She has written several books on these

	Joellen Lapidus
	Phone: (310) 398-7515
	Therapy and support group for large men and women. West Los Angeles.

Overcoming Overeating, Chicago Center
	Judith Matz, LCSW and Carol Coven Grannick
	PO Box 48
	Deerfield IL  60015
	Phone: (708) 853-1200             
	Offers workshops in Chicago-area based on the *Overcoming
	Overeating* approach. 

Overcoming Overeating, National Center
	Jane Hirschmann, MSW and Carol Munter, CEDS
	315 West 86th. Street, Suite 17B
	New York NY  10024-3180
	Work Phone: (212) 875-0442
	Fax: (212) 874-6596 or (212) 582-0076    
	Email: kaneri@aol.Com or carber@aol.Com
	Offers workshops based on the *Overcoming Overeating* approach,
	which advocates demand feeding without dieting and an end to
	body hatred. 

Deborah Scott
	Phone: (312) 472-7646
	Individual, group, couples therapy for women of all sizes.
	Chicago area.

Judith Sikes
	504 W. 17th
	Austin, TX  78701
	Phone: (512) 476-0636

Joan Spiegel, Ph.D.
	Phone: (510) 548-8709, (408) 732-1626
	Individual therapy, eating disorders, body acceptance. San
	Francisco Bay Area.

Weight Release Services
	Barbara Altman Bruno, Ph.D.
	45 Munson Road
	Pleasantville NY  10570-1829
	Work Phone: (914) 747-1525
	Fax: (914) 747-0000 
	Offers psychotherapy, counseling, classes, and coaching for
	individuals, groups, and other professionals, on the subject of
	living well regardless of size. Writes for Dimensions Magazine
	and occasionally for NAAFA, Radiance, and BBW.

Willendorf Press
	Miriam Berg
	PO Box 407
	Bearsville NY  12409
	Work Phone/Fax: (914) 679-1209
	Offers size rights/size-acceptance workshops and consultations
	for groups, businesses, and individuals.


d6)	What legal remedies are there for discrimination on the basis
	of weight and medical mistreatment of fat people?

There are two main legal recourses for addressing discrimination on the
basis of weight. On the federal level, there is the Americans with
Disabilities Act (ADA) (discussed below and on the newsgroup
bit.listserv.ada-law). On the state and local levels there are
anti-discrimination laws. Michigan's anti-discrimination law explicitly
lists weight as a protected characteristic (just like race and gender).
A bill is pending in the Massachusetts House of Representatives to add
weight to their list of protected categories. Contact Project 2000 if
you'd like to work on this, especially if you live in Massachusetts and
have a story to tell about discrimination based on weight.

Here is a description of the ADA from Teresa Brady's article "The Obese:
A New Protected Class Under the Americans with Disabilities Act"
published in *The International Journal of Applied Philosophy* 8:2,
Winter/Spring 1994. (This article is hostile to the idea of obese
people's being covered under the ADA.)

	The ADA is a broad piece of legislation made up of five parts.
	Title I of the ADA prohibits discrimination against disabled
	individuals by providing equal employment opportunities; Title
	II provides equal availability and accessibility to public
	services and transportation; Title III prohibits discrimination
	in public accommodations, commercial facilities, and services
	such as hotels, restaurants and grocery stores; Title IV deals
	with telecommunications, and Title V contains miscellaneous
	provisions for individuals based on their rights under the ADA. 

The ADA does not list which conditions are covered under the act; this
is being worked out by the U.S. courts. 

The EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) guidelines include
obesity as a protected disability. This means that they believe the ADA
should apply to obese people, and they will allow suits to be brought
under the ADA by obese people.

One is generally considered obese if one's weight exceeds the norm
(whatever that is) by more than 15-20%. One is considered "morbidly
obese" if one's weight exceeds the "norm" by 100%. Existing ADA case law
applies to "morbidly obese" people. The ADA has not been tested with
regard to other fat people.  

Airlines are exempted from the Americans with Disablities Act. They are
covered under the Air Access Act of 1990. The Department of
Transportation has information on the Air Access Act.

The ADA does not apply to military personnel, because they are not
civilians and are not protected by civilian law. The military can and
does discriminate on the basis of weight.

An example of ADA advocacy: 
One person on a.s.b-f was attending a class at a local university which
didn't have any chairs large enough for her. For a while, she sat on the
floor, because the departments at the university were arguing over whose
job it was to provide a chair for her. When nothing happened for too
long, she called the departmental dean, the dean of the college, the
dean of students, student support services, and finally the ADA. The ADA
required a note from her doctor (she was pregnant at the time), and then
"proceeded to get ugly with a bunch of people in the most wonderful
way." The ADA people got her excused from class until she received
adequate support materials. 


The National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance (NAAFA) has launched an
online registry for those who have used Redux and/or fen/phen for weight
loss. The site, at, has
been designed to both gather information about and provide information
to former patients who have concerns about the long term effects of the
drugs and to those who are suffering from the illnesses associated with
the drugs, including pulmonary hypertension, valvular heart disease, and
neurotoxicity. Information about the legal recourse available to victims
is also available on the site, and those wishing to can subscribe to an
online mailing list for updates about medical and legal news as it


For more cases, see the legal resources on the NAAFA web site:

In April 1997, UPI reported on a lawsuit filed in Mount Clemens, MI. A
supersize man is suing his former boss for harrassing him about his
weight to the point where he felt forced to quit. He was a factory
manager. His boss made him "do jumping jacks during office meetings."
The company admits that upon hiring, "he was offered a $5,000 'health
bonus' if he'd lose 70 pounds." 

Cook v. State of Rhode Island 

	(2 AD Cases 1147 (1992); 1993 WL 470697 (1st Cir. (R.I.)))

	Plaintiff Cook was a 5'2", 320 pound Rhode Island woman who was
	turned down for the job as institutional attendant at a state
	school for the mentally retarded. Although Cook held the same
	job for eight years previous to her reapplication, this time she
	was disqualified by the state agency, whose officials claimed
	her morbid obesity made her an unacceptable health risk and
	impaired her ability to evacuate patients in case of emergency. 

	Cook claimed her obesity had no negative effects on her health
	and it did not affect her strength or agility. She sued the
	state agency claiming that she was discriminated against due to
	her weight. The district court found in her favor. She was
	awarded $100,000 and the right to the next available position of
	institutional attendant mental retardation. The case was
	affirmed on appeal by the state agency for the following
	reasons. First, the court claimed that Cook was powerless to
	manage her weight, citing the fact that even after years of
	extensive dieting, she regained all of her weight. Second,
	dieting and/or fasting could not help slow down her metabolism.
	Third, although Cook's condition is voluntary, other voluntary
	conditions such as alcoholism are covered under federal
	disabilities laws.

405-pound man sues Denny's Restaurant 
	A 405-pound man is suing Denny's for $1.3 million, claiming
	restaurant workers made him feel like "a clown on parade."
	Gary A. Sellick, 36, also claims that he couldn't fit into a
	booth and the restaurant was unable to provide a chair big
	enough to hold him when he tried to eat there June 8.
	The lawsuit [...] says the experience caused Sellick emotional
	"With them pointing at me and laughing, I immediately felt
	like a clown on parade," Sellick said.  "I don't want to be
	stared at because I'm large.  It's humiliating."
	(*The News and Observer*, Raleigh, NC, Sunday, July 24, 1994)


TITLE(s):       Weighing In Against Obesity Discrimination.
Summary:        Cook v. Rhode Island, Department of Mental Health,
                Retardation, and Hospitals and the Recognition 
                of Obesity as a Disability under the Rehabilitation 
                Act and the Americans With Disabilities Act.
JOURNAL:        Boston College Law Review.
                July 1, 1994; volume 35 number 4
                Page: 927
AUTHOR(s):      Brucoli, M. Andrea
TITLE(s):       Cook v. Rhode Island, Department of Mental Health,
                Retardation, and Hospitals: Morbid Obesity As a 
                Protected Disability or an Unprotected Voluntary
JOURNAL:        Georgia Law Review.
                Spring 1994; volume 28 number 3
                Page: 771
AUTHOR(s):      Neff, Barbara C.
TITLE(s):       Expanding Liability for Employment Discrimination:
                Obesity as a Handicap.
JOURNAL:        For the Defense.
                April 1, 1994; volume 36 number 4
                Page: 14
TITLE(s):       Employment Law.
Summary:        Terminated employee denied due process
                Noncompetition covenant unenforceable where
                employment was at will Recovery under Rehabilitation
                Act for discrimination based on obesity.
JOURNAL:        Law Reporter
                March 1, 1994; volume 37 number 2
                Page: 52
TITLE(s):       Civil Rights--Handicap Discrimination Law--Pennsylvania
                Excludes Obesity From Protection Under the Pennsylvania
                Human Relations Commission, 591 A.2d 281 (Pa. 1991).
JOURNAL:        Temple law review.
                Summer 1992; volume 65 number 2
                Page: 623
AUTHOR(s):      Rothblum, E.D., P.A. Brand, Pamela A., and C.T. Miller
TITLE(s):       The Relationship between Obesity, Employment
                Discrimination, and Employment-Related Victimization.
JOURNAL:        Journal of Vocational Behavior.
                December 1, 1990; volume 37 number 3
                Page: 251
AUTHOR(s):      Klesges, R.C., M.L. Klem, and C.L. Hanson
TITLE(s):       The effects of applicant's health status and qualifications
                on simulated hiring decisions.
JOURNAL:        International Journal of Obesity.
                June 1, 1990; volume 14 number 6
                Page: 527
AUTHOR(s):      Carlsen, Susan B.
TITLE(s):       Legal Issues--A Heavy Issue: Is Obesity Grounds 
                for Not Hiring?
JOURNAL:        School Business Affairs.
                June 1, 1993; volume 59 number 6
                Page: 41


For an up-to-date list and additional sources for legal information,
see the Largesse Web site:

      Lynette Labinger, Esq.
      Roney & Labinger
      344 Wickenden St.
      Providence RI 02903
      Phone: 401-421-9794
      Won case of Cook v. Rhode Island in Nov., 1993, which established
      legal precedent for fat people's right to protection under federal
      disability rights statutes.

      Kenneth I. Friedman, Esq.
      Beck & Eldergill
      447 Center St.
      Manchester CT 06040
      Phone: 203-646-5606
      Handles weight discrimination cases.

      Yvonne G. Bach, Esq.
      2 Penn. Ctr. Plaza #1204/15th. & JFK Blvd.
      Philadelphia PA 19102
      Phone: 215-496-9900
      Litigates cases involving weight-loss surgery

      James Loots, Esq.
      Barrymore & Loots
      815 Connecticut Ave. N.W., Suite 125
      Washington DC 20006
      Phone: 202-466-4950
      Handles weight discrimination cases

      Karin Stackpole, Esq.
      Barrymore & Loots
      815 Connecticut Ave. NW, Suite 125
      Washington DC 20006
      Phone: 202-466-4950
      Handles weight discrimination cases

      James Goodman, Esq.
      Persons with Disabilities Law Center
      56 17TH Ave. N. E.
      Atlanta GA 30309
      Phone: 404-892-4200
      Handles weight discrimination cases

      James J. Parks, Esq.
      Gabrian and Parks, P. C.
      2525 Telegraph, Suite 303
      Bloomfield MI 48302
      Phone: 810-334-6464
      Handled first weight harassment case under Michigan's
      Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act; strong advocate for size rights;
      handles weight discrimination cases.

      Marilyn H. Marchetti, Esq.
      Oppenheimer, Wolff, & Donnelly
      2 Prudential Plz/180 N. Stetson Ave.
      Chicago IL 60601
      Phone: 312-616-5838
      Handles weight discrimination cases

      Carol Cullum, 
      Cullum & Sena
      45 Polk Street
      San Francisco CA 94102
      Phone: 415-863-5300
      Attorney of size, knowledgeable about weight discrimination 

      Edith Benay, Esq.
      San Francisco CA
      Phone: 415-621-4449
      Has strong background in weight discrimination

      Barbara A. Lawless, Esq.
      San Francisco CA
      Phone: 415-391-7555
      Attorney who won John Rossi's size discrimination case against
      Kragen Auto parts in 1995 and a $1 million dollar award for Rossi.

      Robert Z. Lazo, Esq.
      San Francisco CA
      Phone: 415-522-9771
      Employment lawyer who knows and cares about weight discrimination,
      also wrote article for Los Angeles Daily Journal in Oct., 1993
      about Toni Cassista's case.


d7) Are there modeling agencies for large folks?

Plus Model Management
	49 W 37th St
	New York, NY  10018
	Phone: (212) 672-9882
	Models 5'2" and under, sizes 16-18, and 5'8" and over, sizes

	300 Park Ave South
	New York, NY  10010
	Phone: (212) 473-4884

See also Sandie Sabo's book on plus-size modeling in the Publications FAQ.


SECTION F: Information about this FAQ

e1)     Are there other related FAQs?

There is some overlap in the topics covered by the FAQs. If you don't
find what you're looking for here, try the other FAQs. 

The latest version of the following FAQs can be found at: newsgroup FAQ newsgroup FAQ newsgroup FAQ
      	Clothing for Big Folks in Canada 
      	Clothing for Big Folks in the U.S. (parts 1 and 2)
      	Organizations for Big Folks 
      	Online Resources for Big Folks 
      	Other Resources for Big Folks 
      	Publications for Big Folks 
      	Resources for Dealing With the Physical Aspects of Being Fat 

The following FAQs can be found at:

      	Big Folks and Fitness 
      	Big Folks and Health 
      	Big Folks and Sports 
      	Research on Big Folks 

The latest versions of following FAQs can be found at the following

      	Clothing for Big Folks in the U.K. at
	Clothing for Big Folks in Europe at

	Plus-Size Pregnancy Website at

You can also find (sometimes slightly older versions of) the above FAQs
(except the plus-size pregnancy FAQs) at the following locations:

(Note: The big-folks FAQ is listed separately at these locations.)

You can also get FAQs from via anonymous FTP or via the mail
archive server. For information about the mail server, send email to 
with the word "help" (without the quotes) in the body of the message. 

B2)     Posting information

This document is posted bi-weekly to,, and

Stef Maruch ( maintains this FAQ.


e3)	Contributors

These are the people who contributed significant chunks to the FAQ:
Sasha Wood		(
Largesse		(

Also, lots and lots of other people (too many to credit) contributed
information that appears herein, some via email and some on s.s.f-a or
a.s.b-f. Thanks to them all.

Suggestions for additions/improvements are always welcome.
Send suggestions to Stef Maruch ( 


Copyright 1995-1999 by Stef Maruch (
Permission is granted to copy and redistribute this article in its
entirety for non-commercial, educational use only, provided that this
copyright notice is not removed or altered. No portion of this work may
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User Contributions:

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Last Update March 27 2014 @ 02:11 PM