Access All Areas
About the campaign
We launched our Access All Areas campaign back in 2015 after hearing from countless guide dog owners about being refused access to public places because of their dog. This is almost always illegal. Under the Equality Act, guide dog and other assistance dog owners have the right to enter most services, premises and vehicles with their dog.
Our research shows that the most frequent places that guide dog owners are refused access to are minicabs, taxis, restaurants and shops. This is why we’ve been calling for the government to introduce Disability Equality Training for minicab and taxi drivers, to make them aware of the law and how better to support people with a visual impairment. We’ve been making similar calls in countries across the United Kingdom.
The following video shows the impact on a guide dog owner who is refused access to a taxi or minicab.
Why we're campaigning
- 75% of assistance dog owners we surveyed have been refused access to a restaurant, shop or taxi.
- In a one-year period, 42% of assistance dog owners were refused entry to a taxi or minicab because of their dog.
- 33% of assistance dog owners surveyed were refused entry to a minicab or taxi because the driver said they had an allergy, but didn't hold a valid medical exemption certificate as legally required.
- 20% of assistance dog owners surveyed said that a minicab or taxi arrived but the driver drove off without even speaking to them.
The next big moment in our Access All Areas campaign will be holding a mass lobby in Parliament on 19 June. We aim to connect as many guide dog owners as possible with their MPs to help build support for this vital campaign. We will be sharing ways for campaigners to get involved shortly.
You can help us act on Access All Areas by signing up for campaigns updates.
We will then contact you via email with our latest campaign news and activity and how you can get involved. From signing petitions and sharing posts on social media, to writing to MPs; our campaigns community help us to drive change. Will you help us make a difference?
Each refusal is crushing, confidence shattering, rejecting, and traumatic. I always feel that I don't want to go out after - but work dictates I must.
Guide dog owner, Stevenage
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We'd love to hear from you!
You can contact us using the details below, or by post at: Guide Dogs Campaigns Team, 20 Thanet Street, London WC1H 9QL