YP Letters: Guide dog owners have right to fair access

From: Ian Beverley, Littlemoor Grove, Mirfield.

The charity Guide Dogs claims owners are being let down because the penalties issued to taxi and minicab drivers who flout the law and refuse to take assistance dogs are inadequate.

AS the weeks fly by, it’s disturbing to read and hear of more access refusals to guide dog owners to a range of services. From taxis and minicabs to shops and restaurants, each instance that we hear about is one that should never happen.

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Why? Well the law is very clear indeed and those refusing us access are not only turning down business, they are challenging equality law which is there for a good and just purpose.

Travelling into work the other day, I was seated on a very crowded and extremely warm train. Not an ideal situation, but commuting is a very pressured business at times. When I was about to get off the train with my guide dog, someone said to me that ‘people like you shouldn’t be allowed to travel at times like this’.

People like me? I must admit I did put my hands up to my head to see if I’d sprouted horns or grown an extra nose. People like me have the right to travel at these times, because we have the right like anybody to access services, jobs and opportunities. We have the right to be mobile (hence having the wonderful assistance of great guide dogs). Support the #Access all areas campaign because it is really important to continue raising the importance of lifting barriers to choice and our rights.