Secret filming shows blind people being illegally refused entry to restaurants and shops because of their guide dogs.
12:23pm UK, Friday 06 September 2013
Philip Biggs, of Hearing Dogs For Deaf People, says there is a lot of misunderstanding about access for guide and hearing dogs.
A new study by the charity Guide Dogs has shown that blind people are being illegally turned away from restaurants and shops because of their canine companions.
Sky News has obtained undercover footage from the charity of examples of this taking place, despite legislation being passed three years ago aimed at ensuring disabled people have the same right to services as everyone else.
In the footage, Dave Kent and his guide dog Winston can be seen being refused entry to shops and restaurants.
Despite telling store security guards or staff that Winston is a guide dog, he is told it is against store policy or that the shop is for customers not dogs.
Rob Harris, engagement manager at Guide Dogs, said the problem was a lack of awareness.
He told Sky News: “The Equality Act 2010 states that each service must provide reasonable adjustment to make sure that disabled people can access it, whether that be buying their food, or buying their shopping or their clothes, so there really is no excuse.”
The Equality Act 2010 provides disabled people with the same rights to services in shops, banks, taxis and restaurants.
Under the act a store or restaurant could have to pay damages if it discriminated against a blind person because they had