NYRA has been involved in an anti-discrimination campaign against Joe Duff of Crazy Ray’s Junkyard in Maryland. Crazy Ray’s has a policy, stated clearly on their website and at their store locations that they do not allow anyone under 18 to enter. In fact, at the Crazy Ray’s website “You must be over 18 to enter, no children.” is the first thing listed under “9 things every Crazy Ray’s Customer Should Know.” Mr. Duff has been informed repeatedly that this policy is a violation Maryland Article 49B which protects people from discrimination in public accommodations.
Despite being fully aware that he is violating the law, Mr. Duff persists and the policy continues to be enforced. Over a year ago, we filed a complaint with the Maryland Commission on Human Relations and that complaint has been slowly moving forward. Last month, after refusing to comply with requests from the Commission, Mr. Duff received a subpoena and is now legally required to justify his policies. NYRA staff members have brought the issue to the attention of Mr. Henry Ford, the executive director of the MCHR and we are in preliminary discussions about creating some sort of official public-private partnership with the commission in order to expedite these claims in the future. We are confident that our hard work and persistence will pay off and that the Crazy Ray’s case will be a model for us to emulate for years to come.