Suit: Woman with Crohn’s disease denied bathroom access at two area businesses

SHARE Suit: Woman with Crohn’s disease denied bathroom access at two area businesses

A lawsuit has been filed against two Chicago-area businesses that allegedly denied bathroom access to a woman with Crohn’s disease, a violation of Illinois’ Restroom Access Act.

In the suit filed Monday in Cook County Circuit Court, the woman alleges that despite having a Medical Alert Restroom Access Card, employees at a South Loop Walgreens store and an Oak Brook Anthropologie would not let her use their restrooms.

Immediately after not being allowed to use the businesses’ restrooms, the woman defecated on the floor, causing her severe emotional distress, the suit stated.

Her visit to the Walgreens at 501 W. Roosevelt was in August 2013, and she was in the Anthropologie store in March 2014, according to the lawsuit.

In August 2005, Illinois enacted the Restroom Access Act, or Ally’s Law. The law allows people with Crohn’s disease or other inflammatory bowel diseases access to businesses’ employee restrooms if a public restroom is not nearby.

“Plaintiff experienced such extreme emotional distress as a result of not being able to use the restroom [that] she did not leave her house for days, and still experiences trepidation being in public places for fear she will not be able to use the restroom,” the suit stated.

Representatives from Walgreens and Anthropologie’s parent company could not be reached for comment Monday evening.

The two-count suit alleges intentional infliction of emotional distress. It seeks more than $100,000 in damages.

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