by Daniel Fink, MD, Chair, The Quiet Coalition
This interesting piece by San Francisco Chronicle’s restaurant critic Soleil Ho tries to balance all aspects of restaurant noise. I think she does an excellent job discussing various aspects of restaurant noise, including costly technological solutions to the noise problem, except for one thing: ambient noise in restaurants is a major disability rights issue.
The good news is that it’s feasible to make restaurants quieter. If enough people ask restaurant managers to turn down the music, if enough people ask their elected representatives for quiet restaurant legislation, this will happen.
Remember when almost all restaurants were filled with secondhand smoke? Now we enjoy pleasant, healthier, smoke-free restaurants. And in the future, I am confident we will be able to dine in quieter restaurants, enjoying both the meal and the conversation with our dining companions.
Dr. Daniel Fink is a leading noise activist based in the Los Angeles area. He is the founding chair of The Quiet Coalition, an organization of science, health, and legal professionals concerned about the impacts of noise on health, environment, learning, productivity, and quality of life in America. Dr Fink also is the interim chair of Quiet Communities’ Health Advisory Council, and he served on the board of the American Tinnitus Association from 2015-2018.