Peloton Faces Claims of Denying Deaf Users Equal Access to Workouts

Elizabeth DiNardo, Esq. | Associate Counsel


On December 10, 2020, class claims were filed in New York Supreme Court in New York County against the popular at home fitness company Peloton alleging that the company has denied, and continues to deny, deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals equal access to the same goods, services and benefits it provides to non-disabled Peloton app subscribers.

In the complaint, named plaintiff Phillip Sullivan Jr. argues that the Peloton app contains access barriers that make it difficult for users that are deaf or hard-of-hearing to reasonably access all the benefits of the Peloton app. Specifically, the plaintiff argues Peloton’s failure to provide closed-captioning for its workouts makes it impossible for deaf or hard-of-hearing users to comprehend the audio portions of Peloton’s workout videos.

The Peloton app and its wide array of workout videos, virtual classes and fitness-related advice is available to all paying Peloton subscribers. The plaintiff points out that closed-captioning is a readily available technology and is used by other heavily trafficked mobile apps like YouTube and Netflix, illustrating that it would be easy for Peloton to implement a closed-captioning option.

The plaintiff brings suit on behalf off all similarly situated deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals who seek equal access to the goods, services and benefits provided by Peloton through the Peloton app. The suit brings causes of action for violation of New York State Human Rights Law Article 15, violation of New York State Civil Rights Law Article 4 and violation of New York City Human Rights Law NYC Administrative Code section 8-102. In addition to monetary demands, the suit also seeks declaratory and injunctive relief to correct Peloton’s polices and practices by implementing the necessary measures to ensure that he Peloton app is in compliance with state law and by implementing continued monitoring of such measures.

The Case Is: Phillip Sullivan Jr. v. Peloton Interactive Inc., Case No.: 160744/2020, in New York Supreme Court for New York County


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