Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Study shows half of DC cab drivers pass by blind people with guide dogs

A study by a civil rights watchdog, the Equal Rights Center, showed in half of 30 tests cab drivers passed by blind passengers with guide dogs. The study was done based on complaints by blind people that some taxi drivers do not follow the law requiring reasonable accommodations. In fact, some try to charge surcharges for taking a guide dog. You can read more here and watch the video below.


{This video lacks narration. The video text precedes the video.}


Video Text:
The Equal Rights Center (ERC)

The Washington Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs (WLC)

Hogan and Lovells US LLP

More than 25 million individuals in the United States report having vision loss; approximately 2.5 million of those are legally blind.

Federal law requires taxicab drivers to allow service dogs in their vehicles, and prohibits them from charging a surcharge, higher fare, or extra fee for transporting a service dog.

Despite these protections, people encounter discrimination on a daily basis.

(Video of blind woman with a service dog attempting to hail a cab. Two cabs pass her and pick up another woman 100 feet away)

The ERC conducted tests in the District; each included two individuals, one with a service dog and one without, who stood on the same side of the block.

(Video of blind woman with a service dog attempting to hail a cab. A cab approaches her, slows down to a near stop, and then drives on to pick up another women 100 feet away)

In 60% of these tests, the tester with a service dog was subjected to at least one form of discriminatory treatment.

(Video of a woman with a service dog attempting to hail a cab. A cab passes her and picks up another women 100 feet away)

"These instances are both hurtful and an insult to those of us who must rely upon the loving assistance of our dogs to travel independently." -ERC member, Charles Crawford

Video of a man with a service dog attempting to hail a cab. A cab passes him and picks up another man 100 feet away)

"Cabbie's go whizzing by and I can't see to know if they have somebody in their cab or if they don't." -ERC member, Stan Berman

(Video of a woman with a service dog attempting to hail a cab. A cab passes her and picks up another women 100 feet away)

Help advance civil rights and learn more about what can be done to end discrimination against individuals who use service dogs.

Learn more and download the report at www.equalrightscenter.org

3 comments:

Dean Stinson said...

I'm not real sure what to say. Between this vid and the one on the wrongful doing of the train operators for the man in the wheel chair, I'm disgraced to be a human. Why is it so difficult to act from grace, gratitude and Love. It makes no sense, but this message needs to be put out there. Come on you good TAXI drivers, help out!!

Dean C. Stinson
http://livingwithaquad.blogspot.com/

WildKat said...

Of course it happens more than it's reported! It happens a lot more...

I know from experience. When a cab driver passes me I often don't even realize it was a cab unless someone mentions it. When I do, even if the driver stops to yell out the window "no dogs" before speeding away I can't get the cab number, and without the cab number when you call the company to report it they say they can't do anything! This is true for many areas/countries.

It's normal for three or four cabs to pass me by (some without even stopping, or stopping to pick up someone else instead) before I finally get one to pick me and my guide/service dog up, and that's after I tell the dispatcher about Duke! If it normally takes a cab 5 minutes to come I can count on waiting at least 45 minutes or more and that's if I'm "lucky"...

Ruth said...

Wildkat- thanks for your comment about your personal experiences with this.