Father Forced to Tear Down Daughter's Wheelchair Ramp - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Father Forced to Tear Down Daughter's Wheelchair Ramp

By Minna Sugimoto

KAIMUKI (KHNL) -- A father's labor of love is dismantled. Now, two wheelchair-bound sisters are finding it difficult to get in and out of their Kaimuki home.

Twelve-year-old Etalynia trembles with fear, as she prepares to use a flimsy wheelchair ramp. It's the only way for her to get inside her home.

"This is absolutely unsafe," Robert Jahier, Etalynia's father, said as he helped her along.

Etalynia and her sister, 18-year-old Renisha, have motor, visual and speech impairments due to a genetic disorder. Their father built a solid, wooden walkway for them.

"We weren't trying to do anything illegal," he said. "We're just trying to get our kids in and out of our house."

He says the city forced him to tear it down by threatening a fine of $50 per day.

"We didn't have no city money to help build this," Jahier said. "But they sure want to take a lot from us away."

He says the city rejected the walkway because it didn't meet the 10-foot setback requirement.

"So I'd have to come back here, come over here, come over here, come over here," Jahier described how the structure would have to look. "And even if I came over here, I'd still be too high to come down."

Now, the walkway is in pieces. Jahier says he could try to get a variance. But he'd have to put up $1,200, which he says he can't afford.

"Our ramp, the way that it was, was not violating anybody's rights," he said. "It was physically appealing. It was physically sturdy. It was more than adequate with our needs. I'd just like to be able to put it back up."

A city spokesperson is looking into the case.

  • Hawaii News Now headlinesNewsMore>>

  • Rosenstein to meet Trump Thursday as job hangs in balance

    Rosenstein to meet Trump Thursday as job hangs in balance

    Monday, September 24 2018 10:52 AM EDT2018-09-24 14:52:17 GMT
    Monday, September 24 2018 6:06 PM EDT2018-09-24 22:06:06 GMT
    President Donald Trump has not decided whether to fire Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein for reportedly questioning the president's fitness to serve.More >>
    President Donald Trump has not decided whether to fire Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein for reportedly questioning the president's fitness to serve.More >>
  • Republicans launch full-scale save-Kavanaugh campaign

    Republicans launch full-scale save-Kavanaugh campaign

    Monday, September 24 2018 2:52 AM EDT2018-09-24 06:52:33 GMT
    Monday, September 24 2018 6:05 PM EDT2018-09-24 22:05:46 GMT
    (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta). FILE - In this Sept. 5, 2018, file photo, Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington. Combat won out over caution. White House aides and congressio...(AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta). FILE - In this Sept. 5, 2018, file photo, Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington. Combat won out over caution. White House aides and congressio...

    The new accusation came just a few hours after negotiators had reached an agreement to hold a public hearing Thursday for Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, who accuses him of sexually assaulting her at a party when they were teenagers.

    More >>

    The new accusation came just a few hours after negotiators had reached an agreement to hold a public hearing Thursday for Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, who accuses him of sexually assaulting her at a party when they were teenagers.

    More >>
  • Trump: No statehood for Puerto Rico with critics in office

    Trump: No statehood for Puerto Rico with critics in office

    Monday, September 24 2018 10:51 AM EDT2018-09-24 14:51:55 GMT
    Monday, September 24 2018 6:04 PM EDT2018-09-24 22:04:13 GMT
    (AP Photo/Evan Vucci). United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres, left, and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, right, listen as President Donald Trump speaks during the "Global Call to Action on the World Drug Problem" at the Un...(AP Photo/Evan Vucci). United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres, left, and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, right, listen as President Donald Trump speaks during the "Global Call to Action on the World Drug Problem" at the Un...
    President Donald Trump says he's an "absolute no" on statehood for Puerto Rico while critics, including San Juan's mayor, are in office.More >>
    President Donald Trump says he's an "absolute no" on statehood for Puerto Rico while critics, including San Juan's mayor, are in office.More >>
Powered by Frankly