The Most Basic of Human Rights . . . Access.

It's hard to believe that in this day and age, people still need to campaign for the protection of their human rights. Yet that's the situation many disabled people face in many countries around the world, especially if they rely on guide dogs and assistance dogs.

It is the situation that exists in Curaçao and the Netherlands Antilles. After being denied access with her guide dog Wagner to many places normally sighted people go, such as banks, supermarkets, restaurants and retail shops, and in many cases being shouted at in a very hostile way and told to 'get out', Laura decided to break through the cultural taboo of shamed isolation that is imposed on disabled people and initiate a campaign to lobby for equal access rights legislation for people who rely on guide and assistance dogs in Curaçao and the Netherlands Antilles as well as showing support for a similar movement in the Netherlands.

Many people are quite surprised when they learn that while the Kingdom of the Netherlands may protect individuals from discrimination, such protection doesn't exist for their guide/assistance dogs. If a person is denied access for this reason, then it is up to the individual to initiate an action - the state won't do it on their behalf, as it will in countries like Canada and the United States.

So if you haven't done so already, please sign the petition for access legislation for guide and assistance dogs to show legislators in Curaçao and the Netherlands Antilles there is public support for such an initiative that will protect the rights and dignity of those members of our community who don't see as well, hear as well, or walk as well as the rest of us.

Thank you.

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Guide Dog Accessibility

(Excerpt from Wikipedia)


Despite regulations or rules that deny access to animals in restaurants and other public places, in many countries, guide dogs and other types of assistance dogs are protected by law, and therefore may accompany their handlers most places that are open to the public. Laws and regulations vary worldwide:

  • In the United States, the Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits any business, government agency, or other organization that provides access to the general public from barring guide dogs. However, religious organizations are not required to provide such access. The Fair Housing Act requires that landlords allow tenants to have guide dogs in residences that normally have a No Pets policy and no extra fees may be charged for such tenants. Whether guide dogs in training have the same rights or not usually falls on each individual state government.
  • In most South American countries and Mexico, guide dog access depends solely upon the goodwill of the owner or manager. In more tourist-heavy areas, guide dogs are generally welcomed without problems. In Brazil, however, a 2006 federal decree [2] requires allowance of guide dogs in all public and open to public places. The Brasília Metro has developed a program which trains guide dogs to ride it.
  • In Europe, the situation varies. Some countries have laws that govern the entire country and sometimes the decision is left up to the respective regions.
  • In Australia, the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 protects guide dog handlers. Each state and territory has its own laws, which may differ slightly.
  • In Canada, guide dogs are allowed anywhere that the general public is allowed.
  • Because Islam considers dogs in general to be unclean, many Muslim taxi drivers and store owners have refused to accommodate customers who have guide dogs. In 2003, the Sharia Council, based in the United Kingdom, ruled that the ban on dogs does not apply to those used for guide work,[3] but many Muslims continue to refuse access, and see the pressure to allow the dogs as a restraint on religious liberty.[4] Sheikh Ibrahim Mogra of the Muslim Council of Britain has argued strongly that Sharia does not preclude working with guide dogs, and it is actually a duty under Sharia for a Muslim to help the visually impaired.
  • In South Korea, it is illegal to deny access to guide dogs in any areas that are open to the public. Violators are fined for no more than 2 million South Korean won. [5]S

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Summary of Access in EU and the U.S.

Report by the European Blind Union, July 2000

A photograph reproduced with the kind permission of the french federation of guide dogs associations
Picture description

Belgium |  Germany |  Finland |  France |  Ireland |  Italy |  The Netherlands |  Russia |  Slovak Republic |  Spain |  Switzerland |  United Kingdom | 



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Introduction

This report compiles information on guide dog access to public places and facilities. An ever increasing number of guide dog owners travel throughout Europe for business, social reasons or leisure.

The access situation in most European countries is however very complex : in one same country, there may be several access regulations with varying geographical scope. In others, there are simply no regulations at all.

Across the board, access for guide dog owners heavily depends on the good will and support of well-informed staff. This means that there is always the possibility of a guide dog owner being denied access to, say, a hotel or a cinema either because the owner/manager is not receptive to visually impaired people's mobility problems, or because he is simply not aware of regulations, where they exist.

Restrictions to guide dog access is a major obstacle on visually impaired people's road to inclusion and independent life. As consistently claimed by visually impaired people and their organisations, the way forward boils down into the introduction of harmonised European positive regulations that would secure universal access for all guide dog owners in Europe.

N.B. : Readers will find that no guide dog access information is provided for a number of European countries. This is mainly due to the fact that it has not always been possible to identify relevant information sources. In some cases, lack of information is accounted for by the fact that the use of guide dogs as a mobility aid is only marginal.




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BELGIUM

The number of active guide dog users in Belgium is generally estimated to be between 350 and 400.

Although there are no specific regulations, guide dog access to public buildings (administration, schools, etc.) is hardly a problem. A slight exception to this are hospitals where guide dogs must be left in reception area. Organisations of the blind in Belgium are currently working towards the adoption of a national law governing guide dog access.

All public transport (trains, undergrounds, buses, planes, ships) are accessible to guide dog owners provided they carry their disability card. Guide dogs travel free of charge. As regards taxis, the situation varies from one taxi operator to the other : for example, a major company operating in Brussels has equipped its cars with blankets for guide dogs. Of course, taxi drivers may deny access simply because they are afraid of dogs. The Belgian airway company SABENA accepts guide dogs free of charge, but owners must advise the company when buying his/her ticket.

Access to cultural and catering facilities (cinemas, museums, restaurants, hotels, etc.) mainly depends on the good will and support of informed staff.
Some supermarkets have used advertisements showing a blind person with his guide dog to advise that their premises are accessible.

Puppies are vaccinated against rabies (only compulsory vaccination in Belgium). Vaccination against distemper, canine hepatitis, leptospirosis and parvo virus is recommended for guide dogs entering Belgium.
Besides, it is compulsory for puppies (born, bought or sold) to be identifiable either by microchip or tattoo. It is therefore recommended for guide dogs entering Belgium to carry some form of identification.

There are no quarantine regulations to enter Belgium.

Guide dogs are generally provided free of charge although the situation may vary from one guide dog school to the other.

Information provided by Les Amis des Aveugles
Website : www.amisdesaveugles.be

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FINLAND

There are 205 active guide dog users in Finland.

Public buildings, cultural facilities, catering (hotels, restaurants, etc.), supermarkets, and most public transport are accessible to guide dog owners. However, minor problems with regard to access to trains have been reported.

Puppies between 30 days and one year of age are vaccinated against rabies.

There are no quarantine regulations to enter Finland.

Guide dogs are provided free of charge.

Information provided by the Finnish Guide Dog School. Further details are available at www.opaskoirakoulu.fi

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FRANCE

There are 1500 active guide dog users in France.

The Law of 31 July 1987 provides free access for guide dog owners to all places and facilities open to the general public.
With regard to public buildings and catering facilities however, the Law imposes sanitary restrictions prohibiting guide dog access to e.g. care units in hospitals, kitchens in catering facilities, etc.

It may be requested that guide dogs are muzzled in public transport. Some private transport companies impose access restrictions.
Across the board, the 1987 Law does not seem to be adequately publicized. There have been several reported cases of guide dog owners being refused access to public facilities (cinemas, restaurants, etc.) by staff who were unaware of existing provisions.

There are no quarantine regulations to enter France. A guide dog user may travel to France provided :
a) his/her guide dog is at least 3 months old,
b) his/her guide dog is identifiable either by microchip or tattoo, or else by a description written by a qualified veterinary,
c) he/she holds a certificate by a qualified veterinary, showing that the guide dog has had vaccination against rabies and that the vaccin is still effective.
For guide dogs coming from countries which have been rabies free for the last 3 years, only a certificate by a qualified veterinary proving the dog comes from such a country and shows no clinical sign of disease is necessary. In any case, a guide dog user must always carry his/her disability card.

Guide dogs are provided free of charge.

Information provided by the French National Federation of Guide Dogs Schools for the Blind. Further details are available at www.chiensguides.com

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GERMANY

The number of active guide dog users in Germany is generally estimated to be betwwen 1500 and 2000 (it is difficult to provide an accurate figure as German guide dog owners are not registered as such).

There are no explicit regulations governing the access of guide dogs to public buildings, but, in practice, access to administrative buildings is hardly a problem.

As regards access to schools and hospitals, there is a State report establishing that, except for premises requiring to be kept sterile, there are no reasons why blind people should not be allowed to be accompanied by their guide dogs in hospitals or a doctor's practice. The fact remains however that access to hospitals and schools may be denied to guide dog users. An exception to this is the State of Slesvig Holstein, where guide dogs are explicitely exempt from the regulation banning the presence of dogs in public places such as playgrounds, hospitals and schools.

A guide dog owner is allowed to travel with his/her guide dog on public transport, with the dog being transported free of charge. Private bus operators cause problems now and again. Taxi operators are bound to a regulation which places upon taxi drivers an obligation to accept a guide dog owner.

There are no explicit legal provisions governing access to cultural facilities, the only exception being the Dogs Owner Directive in force in the State of Slesvig Holstein. Access to cinemas, theatres, museums, libraries, etc. mainly depends on the good will and support of informed staff.

The Federal Directive on Hygiene and Foodstuffs includes no explicit access right for guide dog owners with regard to catering facilities (restaurants, hotels, holiday centers, etc.). It does however make special reference to the fact that there are no food safety reasons why access to catering facilities should be denied to guide dogs. Therefore, facilities selling foodstuffs cannot hide behind food safety regulations when refusing access to guide dog owners. Some owners/managers of such facilities simply avail themselves of the householder's right to forbid entrance.

There are no quarantine regulations to enter Germany. A guide dog user may travel to Germany provided he/she can establish that his/her guide dog has been vaccinated against rabies.

Most guide dog users obtain their dogs free of charge. The cost of training both the blind person and the guide dog - approximately 15,400 Euros - is covered by a number of funding programmes (e.g. National Health Insurance, War Veterans, Accident Insurance).

Information provided by DBSV (German Federation of Blind and Visually Impaired People)
Website : www.dbsv.org

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IRELAND

There are approximately 120 active guide dog owners in the Republic of Ireland. A doubling of this number is planned in the next 10 years.

No statutory regulations exist with regard to access for guide dog owners.

Public transport companies have a code of practice, which allows guide dogs to travel on trains and buses free of charge. Blind people carry free bus passes to identify themselves. Taxis, planes and ships however, have their own particular rules, which change from company to company.

Cinemas, theatres, museums and libraries are approached on individual basis. Generally, guide dog owners have access, so long as the dog is clearly identified as a guide dog and the guide dog owner carries ID proving he is a bonafide guide dog owner.

Guide dogs carrying an ID card endorsed by the Association of Environmental Health Officers of Ireland are exempt from health regulations governing the operation of food premises (restaurants, pubs, etc). Unfortunately, a local proprietor/manager is often unaware of this and may refuse entry. By and large, guide dog owners rely on the good will and support of informed staff.
The guide dog access to supermarkets, department stores, shops, etc. again depends on the individual proprietor/manager's decision.

With regard to our vaccination programme, our puppies at 10 and 12 weeks of age are vaccinated against distemper, canine hepatitis, leptospirosis and parvo virus, as well as para influenza in both its forms. Each dog is booster vaccinated once a year, throughout its life, and worming occurs on a twice-yearly basis, with the use of a broad-spectrum wormer.

With regard to quarantine measures, Ireland has not signed up for the recent Pet Travel Scheme, operated throughout the UK and selected countries in mainland Europe. However, specially licensed owners can travel via the UK, if they meet all the criteria. See UK Guide Dogs website : gdba.org.uk

All services are provided free of charge. Guide dog owners pay IR Pounds 0.50 lease fee for their dog, and a nominal £ 5.00 a week board and lodging charge for their 3-week stay at the Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind Training Centre in Cork.

Information provided by the Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind
Website : www.guidedogs.ie

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ITALY

The Law of 25 August 1988 (Article 1) provides that a blind person is entitled to be accompanied by his own guide dog during his journeys on any public means of transport. The guide dog travels free of charge. It also provides that guide dog owners are allowed to enter public buildings and shops.

Puppies are vaccinated, at 6 weeks of age : against distemper, canine hepatitis and parvo virus ; 9 weeks : against distemper, canine hepatitis, leptospirosis and parvo virus ; 12 weeks : against distemper, canine hepatitis, leptospirosis and parvo virus ; 15 weeks : against distemper, canine hepatitis, leptospirosis, parvo virus, rabies (only for dogs that are assigned to blind people who live in regions where it is compulsory) ; 18 weeks : against parvo virus.
Each dog is booster vaccinated once a year, throughout its life.

There are no quarantine regulations to enter Italy. Guide dogs, just like other dogs that travel to Italy, must have a certificate issued by the Health Authorities of the country of origin proving their good health condition and their vaccinations.

Guide dogs are provided free of charge.

Information provided by Scuola Nazionale Cani Guida per Ciechi
Website : www.rete.toscana.it/sett/polsoc/scuolacaniguida

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THE NETHERLANDS

There are approximately 500 active guide dog users in the Netherlands.

Although there are no explicit regulations in the Dutch legislation, guide dog access to public places and transport is hardly a problem. Access to administration, hospitals, schools, hotels, restaurants, cinemas, shops and other public facilities depends on the good will and support of informed staff, and is very rarely denied.
Guide dogs are allowed on public transport. Of course, a guide dog owner must notify an airway company that he intends to travel with his guide dog.

Puppies are vaccinated against rabies.

There are no quarantine regulations to enter the Netherlands.

Guide dogs are provided free of charge.

Information provided by Koninklijk Nederlands Geleidehonden Fonds
Website : www.geleidehond.nl

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RUSSIA

The number of active guide dog users in Russia is approximately 800.

There are guide dog access regulations in Russia, but these only apply to public transport and shops. Guide dog admittance to administrative buildings and other state-run facilities and services is hardly a problem. Access to facilities and services in the private sector is left to the good will of operators.

A Regulation of the Council of Ministers (12 July 1965) provides guide dog access to any kind of city transport (except metro) and to intercity buses. In addition, guide dogs are transported free of charge on :
- Aircrafts (Decree No 26.8 T-8 of the Civil Aviation Ministry, 21 July 1982). To comply with safety and sanitary regulations, guide dogs must be muzzled, be kept on a lead and carry a veterinary authorization.
- Passenger ships on inland waterway.
- Trains (Decree No 14-17 of the Rail Transport Ministry, 28 July 1986).

There are no quarantine regulations to enter Russia.

There is only one guide dog school in Russia : the Russian Guide Dog School for the Blind. The cost of training a guide dog is about 3 500 dollars.

Guide dogs are provided free of charge to members of the All-Russia Association of the Blind (VOS), provided they can support and take care of their guide dogs.

Information provided by the All-Russia Association of the Blind (VOS)
Fax : +7 095 923 9149
E-mail : oms@vos.org.ru

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SLOVAK REPUBLIC

Slovak Republic has 54 active guide dog users.

Although there are no specific guide dog access regulations in Slovak Republic, guide dogs have free access to all hospitals, schools, administrative buildings, sport and other public facilities.

Guide dogs are transported on all means of public transport. When applicable, the seat located behind the driver is reserved for passengers with guide dogs. In addition, guide dog owners have priority over passengers with non-service dogs. Guide dogs enjoy free access to sleeping carriages on trains.

Guide dogs are allowed in all cultural facilities. The same goes for hotels, holiday centers and restaurants.
Guide dogs are also allowed in shops. As regards food stores however, access is limited to the cashdesk area.

Guide dogs are not required to be muzzled in public places and facilities as a whole.

Vaccination against rabies, with yearly boosters, is compulsory. In the emergence of rabies, guide dog meetings are prohibited in the affected areas.

The average price of a guide dog is 2 200 dollars. Guide dogs are provided free of charge to blind people whose income does not exceed twice the minimum living income. Above that limit, a financial participation, increasing in proportion with the person's income, is requested - e.g. between twice and three times the minimum living income : 5 per cent of the guide dog's cost ; between 3 and 4 times : 10 per cent ; over 6 times, the blind person must cover the total cost.

Information provided by the Slovak Blind and Partially Sighted Union
Website : www.unss.sk

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SPAIN

There are 562 active guide dogs owners in Spain.

There are explicit regulations governing guide dog access to public places and facilities in all the autonomous Communities of Spain, except La Rioja.

There are no quarantine regulations to enter Spain.

Guide dogs are provided free of charge.

Further information is available from Fundacion ONCE del Perro Guia :
Tel : +34 91 632 4636, Fax : +34 91 632 4638
E-mail : mdce@once.es

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SWITZERLAND

Switzerland has approximately 350 guide dog users.

Across the board, there are no specific regulations governing guide dog access.

Access to public buildings (administration, hospitals, schools, etc.) and to cultural and catering facilities (cinemas, museums, restaurants, hotels, etc.) is generally permitted but is always subject to the good will of operators.

There are no restrictions as regards guide dog access to public transport. Guide dogs are transported free of charge, including when the blind user travels with an escorting person (Note : escorting person also travels free of charge).

Guide dog access to supermarkets, department stores, shops is subject to a decree of the Swiss Health and Food Authorities (April 1989) which provides that no animals are allowed to enter shops except for guide dogs on duty.

Guide dogs must be vaccinated against rabies.

There are no quarantine regulations to enter Switzerland.

Guide dogs are co-funded by the Swiss Health Authorities and by private foundations. They are in any case provided free of charge to the blind, who also receive a lump sum from the Government as compensation for food, equipment and veterinary expenses.

Information provided by :
Stiftung Schweizerische Schule fur Blindenfuhrhunde Allschwil
Website : www.blindenhundeschule.ch
and
Verein fr Blindenhunde und Mobilitatshilfen
Website : www.blindenhund.ch

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UNITED KINGDOM

No statutory regulations exist with regard to access for guide dog owners.

Public transport companies have a code of practice, which allows guide dogs to travel on trains and buses free of charge, and blind people carry free bus passes to identify themselves. Taxis, planes and ships however have their own particular rules, which change from company to company.

Cultural and catering facilities (cinemas, museums, hotels, restaurants, etc.) are approached on an individual basis. Access depends on the good will and support of informed staff.

28 February 2000 was the start of the pilot Pets Travel Scheme (PETS). It marks the start of changes in the UK quarantine laws, allowing British residents and people travelling to the UK from overseas to bring in their pet cats and dogs as long as specific criteria are met. This means that visually impaired people have a new choice to take their guide dogs abroad to the various qualifying countries. Full implementation of the PETS scheme is due by April 2001.

- Under the requirements of the Pet Travel Scheme, taking a dog abroad for the first time should be planned at least seven months in advance.

- Pilot scheme routes will include the Calais to Dover sea crossings, Eurotunnel Shuttle Services, certain sea routes into Portsmouth from France. Certain air routes into Heathrow from Europe are expected to commence later in the pilot scheme.

To travel abroad, the following government requirements must be met :
1) The dog must first have a microchip implanted. The microchip must be ISO standard.

2) After microchipping, the dog must be given a rabies vaccination.

3) One month after vaccination, the dog must have a blood test to confirm immunity. NB : confirmation must be received at least six months before the planned return date to the UK.

4) To leave the UK on a day trip, owners need to get tick and tapeworm treatment for their dog, together with a certificate to say that it has been given by a vet. This should be done in the UK in the 24 to 48 hour period before the return journey starts. Some countries, including France, also require another separate certificate, known as export health certificate, to show that your dog meets certain health conditions set out by that country. Without this, dogs will not be allowed to enter that country. Owners should apply to their local Animal Health Office for this certificate at least 10 days before they travel.

5) Certification signed by an authorised veterinary surgeon confirming that all the above requirements have been met must accompany the dog.

Should guide dogs fail to meet any of the requirements of PETS on their return to the UK, they will be subject to quarantine until proof of their identity, etc. can be provided.

Countries that are included in the PETS pilot are as follows : Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Iceland, Italy, Liechstentein, Luxembourg, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, San Marino, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Vatican City.

It is hoped that guide dogs will also be allowed to travel between UK, and Australia and New Zealand under the pilot scheme. This will depend however on the UK Government's discussions with the Australian and New Zealand authorities, and whether airlines are prepared to act as carriers.

Arrangements for travel to the Republic of Ireland and Channel Islands remain unchanged for the time being.

Information provided by the Guide Dogs for the Blind Association. Further details are available at : www.gdba.org.uk

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U.S. State by State Access Laws for Guide Dog Users

Please cursor past the links to page down for individual state information or use your search function.

Alabama
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
California

Colorado
Connecticut
Delaware
Washington D.C.
Florida

Georgia
Hawaii
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana

Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine

Maryland
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi

Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
Nevada
New Hampshire

New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota

Ohio
Oklahoma
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island

South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah

Virginia
Vermont
Washington
West Virginia
Wisconsin



Wyoming


Alabama
Statute or Law:
Act 869, Alabama Statutes of 1975, Sections 21-7-1 through 21-7-10, Chapter 7

Alabama statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and conveyances. No additional charge can be levied because of the presence of the dog, but the dog guide user is liable for any property damage attributable to the dog.

Public accommodations for the purpose of this statute include such places as hotels, restaurants, stores, public buildings, places of amusement and recreation and any other facilities to which the public is invited. (•21-7-3, •21-7-2)

Conveyances include airplanes, trains, buses, boats, public elevators and all other transportation services offered for public use. (•21-7-3)

Housing, except for rented rooms in a private dwelling, cannot be denied to a dog guide user either because of his or her blindness or because he or she has a dog guide. The landlord, however, is not responsible for modifying the premises in any way. (•21-7-9)

Violation: Any person, firm, corporation or agent thereof who violates the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and subject to appropriate penalty. (•21-7-5)

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Alaska
Statute or Law:
Alaska Statutes of 1988; Code of Civil Procedure Sections 09.65.150 and 11.76.130

The State of Alaska guarantees by statute the legal right of a blind person to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in a common carrier, place of public accommodation, or other place to which the public is invited. No charge can be levied because of the presence of the dog, but the dog guide user is liable for any property damage the dog might cause.

Violation: Interference with the rights of a disabled person is a Class B misdemeanor.

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Arizona
Statute or Law:
Arizona Statutes of 1965, amended in 1979, 1981, and 1992, Section 11-1024

Arizona statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a dog guide in any place to which the public is invited. The same right exists in regard to common carriers. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damages caused by the dog to the premises.

Public places include restaurants, cafes, hotels, motels, stores, places of amusement and all other facilities open to the public except zoos and wild animal parks, which may exclude dog guides under certain specified conditions. (•11-1024-A)

A proprietor may request that the dog guide user present the identification card provided to him or her by the school from which the dog was obtained. (•11-1024-B)

Common carriers include trains, buses, taxis, airplanes, etc. (•11-1024A)

The driver of a vehicle must yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian with a dog guide. (•11-1024D)

Violation: Any person, firm, association, corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor and punishable under Arizona State Law. (•11-1024G)

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Arkansas
Statute or Law:
Arkansas Act 484 of 1973, Chapter 29, Sections 82-2901 through 82-2907

Arkansas statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to equal opportunity in the areas of housing, employment, and the use of public accommodations and public carriers. It further guarantees the right of a blind person to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in the enjoyment of these rights and privileges. The dog guide user cannot be charged an extra fee because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises.

The right to employment, which the statute ensures, covers jobs in state government or political subdivisions of Arkansas, including schools and fields of academic activity receiving state funding. The only employment circumstances not covered are those where a physical disability makes it impossible to meet the job requirements. (•82-2901)

The right to "equal accommodations" extends to all housing, except for private single family dwellings, a portion of which are made available for rent. The landlord is not required to modify the accommodations or to assume a higher standard of care. (•82-2903, •82-2904)

Public accommodations, for the purpose of this Act, include hotels, places of resort and recreation, public buildings, restaurants, and all other places to which the public is invited. (•82-2901, •82-2902, •82-2903, •82-2904)

Common carriers and conveyances include all modes of transportation open to public use, whether by air, land, or water. (•82-2901, •82-2903, •82-2904)

Violation: Any person, firm, corporation or agent thereof who violates the above rights is guilty of a misdemeanor. (•82-2906)

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California
Statute or Law:
California Statutes of 1968, Chapter 461, Part 2.5 of California Civil Code, Sections 54 through 54.7, and Sections 55 and 55.1, amended 1969, 1972, 1974, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1983, and 1989

California law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. Also guaranteed is the right of a dog guide user to equal availability to commercial housing, but the landlord is not required to modify the premises or to maintain a higher standard of care than he provides other tenants. No extra charge can be levied by a public accommodation, common carrier, or landlord because of the dog guide's presence, and the dog guide user is liable for any property damage caused by the dog. For purposes of California state income tax, all costs for the maintenance of a dog guide are deductible as medical expenses.

Public accommodations include hotels, motels, restaurants, stores, places of resort and recreation, and all other places to which the public is invited. Zoos are the only exception, but if a zoo excludes dog guides, it must provide an adequate kennel area for housing the dog guides, and must provide a sighted escort if the dog guide user is not accompanied by a sighted person. (•54.1, •54.7)

Common carriers or public transportation include airplanes, trains, taxis, buses, and all other forms of transportation offered for public use. (•54.1)

Housing includes all property offered for rent or use, except private single family dwellings of no more than one room for rent. (•54.1)

Violation: The above enumerated rights are enforceable under the provisions of the California Civil Rights Code. (•54.3, •55, •55.1) The prevailing party in the action shall be entitled to recover reasonable attorneys' fees.

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Colorado
Statute or Law:
Colorado Revised Statute 1973, Section 40-09-109 (amended 1986) and CRS 1963 (amended 1971, 1979, and 1986), Part 8, Section 24-34-801 (1)a through f and 2(a) and b; Section 24-34-802 - penalty.

Colorado law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog in all public accommodations and on all common carriers. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises.

Public accommodations include public facilities, hotels, restaurants, stores, grocery stores, places of resort and amusement, and any other place to which the public is invited. (•24-34-801 (1)c and (1)d)

Common carriers include airplanes, boats, buses, trains, and any other conveyances offered for public use. (•24-34-801 (1)d)

Violation: Any person, firm, or corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable by a fine not to exceed $100, or confinement in jail for not more than 60 days, or both. (•24-34-802)

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Connecticut
Statute or Law:
Chapter 435, Section 46a-44, 1991

Connecticut Statutes guarantee a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all forms of public transportation. The dog must be in harness and in the direct custody of the individual. Also, a dog guide user has a legal right of access to all housing and public and commercial buildings, and cannot be discriminated against because of his or her dog in renting or purchasing housing or commercial space, including mobile home parks. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence. A landlord, however, is not responsible for modifying the premises or maintaining a higher standard of care than provided other tenants, and the dog guide user is responsible for any damage to property that the dog may cause.

No fee can be charged for licensing a dog guide, but the first time a dog guide is registered, the town clerk should be shown written evidence, such as an identification card, that the dog has been specially trained. (• 22-340)

Public accommodations include hotels, inns, restaurants, stores, places of amusement, public buildings, and any other facility offered to the public. The dog guide shall be in the direct custody of its owner and shall be wearing a harness or orange-colored leash and collar. (•46a-44)

Public transportation includes trains, buses, and all other modes of transit offered for public use. (•46a-44)

Housing or property includes publicly assisted housing and commercial property, except two-family houses in which the owner or his family reside, or a private dwelling in which the owner lives but also rents rooms. The statute covers mobile home parks, and deals with both sales and rentals. (•46-44b)

Violation: Violation of the above rights is punishable as a Class C misdemeanor. Penalties can include fines of not more than $100 and/or 60 days imprisonment (•46-44c)

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Delaware
Statute or Law:
Delaware Statutes, Title 16, Chapter 95, Sections 9501 through 9506; Title 31 (amended 1984), Section 2117

Delaware Statutes guarantee a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all places and conveyances open to the general public. The only limitation is that a dog can be excluded where a "Clear Danger" or harm to others can be established. Also guaranteed to a dog guide user is the legal right to equal accommodation in all housing. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog may cause to the premises. No modification of the premises is required, nor a higher standard of care necessary, other than that provided to other patrons and tenants.

Public places or accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, places of resort or amusement, and all other places to which the general public is invited. (Title 16, •9502)

Public conveyances include trains, buses, taxis, and all modes of transportation offered for public use. (Title 16, •9502)

Housing covers all accommodations for rent or lease, except single family private dwellings. (Title 16, •9505)

Violation: Any person, firm, corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above legally established rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and is punishable by a fine not to exceed $100 for each offense, or up to three months in jail, or both. (Title 16, •9506; Title 31, •2117)

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District of Columbia
Statute or Law:
Human Rights Act of 1977, Title 6, Chapter 22; Title 6, Chapter 17, Sections 6-701 through 6-1709

District of Columbia law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in its public buildings and its public facilities, and in all public accommodations and on all public conveyances. The right to equal accommodation in all housing also is guaranteed to a dog guide user. No additional charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog may cause to the premises. Landlords are not required to modify the premises, nor are they responsible for maintaining a higher degree of care than that provided other tenants.

With the exclusion of the U.S. Federal Government, the District of Columbia prohibits all employers, including its own various branches, from employment discrimination because of blindness or visual impairment.

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the general public is invited. (•6-1702, •6-2202, •6-2241)

Public conveyances include boats, trains, buses, streetcars, taxis, airplanes, and all other modes of transportation offered for public use. (•6-1702, •6-2241)

Housing includes all accommodations offered for rent, lease or compensation within the jurisdiction of the district. (•6-1706, •6-2231)

Violation: Any person or agent thereof who denies or interferes with the above legally established rights is punishable with imprisonment up to 90 days, or a fine not to exceed $300, or both. (•6-1707)

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Florida
Statute or Law:
Florida Statutes, Section 413.08 (1) through (8), enacted 1971, amended 1973, 1974, 1977, 1979, 1982, 1983, 1985, 1987, 1989, 1990, and 1991

Florida statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all pubic conveyances. Florida statutory law also guarantees a dog guide user the legal right to equal accommodation in all housing. No extra fee can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any property damage the dog might cause. Landlords are not required to modify the premises nor are they responsible for maintaining a higher standard of care than that provided to other tenants.

Housing accommodation covers any real property or portion thereof that is offered for rent, lease or compensation as a residence or sleeping place, but does not include private single family dwellings in which the occupants have offered no more than one room for rent. (•413.08 (4)a, b, and c)

Public conveyances include all common carriers, airplanes, boats, trains, buses, taxis, and any other mode of transportation offered for public use. (•413.08 (1)a)

Public accommodations include hotels, lodging places, restaurants, stores, places of resort and amusement, and any other place to which the general public is invited. (•413.08 (1)a)

Any trainer of a dog guide, while engaged in the training of such dog, has the same rights and privileges with respect to access to public facilities. (Amendment •413.08 (7))

Violation: Any person, firm, corporation, or agent thereof who denies or interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty under Florida law of a second class misdemeanor and punishable in accordance therewith. (•413.08 (2))

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Georgia
Statute or Law:
Georgia Laws of 1991, Title 30, Chapter 4, Sections 30-4-1 through 30-4-3

Georgia statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all common carriers. Also guaranteed by Georgia law is the legal right of a dog guide user to equal accommodation in all housing. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog guide's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage to the premises that the dog might cause. Landlords are not required to modify the premises, nor are they responsible for maintaining a higher degree of care than that provided other tenants.

Dog guide users employed in vending stands have a legal right to have their dog with them, with the limitation that the dog cannot be within 25 feet of the food being vended. (•30-4-1)

Common carriers include boats, airplanes, trains, buses, taxis, and any mode of transportation offered for public use. (•30-4-1)

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, places of resort or amusement, and any other place to which the general public is invited. (•30-4-1)

Housing includes all property offered for rent, lease, or purchase, but does not include single family dwellings with no more than one room for rent. (•30-4-2)

Violation: Any person, firm, corporation or agent thereof who denies or interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable by a fine not to exceed $100, or by imprisonment for not more than 10 days, or both. (•30-4-3)

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Hawaii
Statute or Law:
Hawaii Revised Statutes, Sections 347-13, 347-13.5, 347-14, and 347-19; Hawaii Quarantine Policy No. A1-13, amended 7/17/80

Hawaii law guarantees the legal right of a blind person to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all places of public accommodation and on all common carriers. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises.

Public accommodations include hotels, lodging places, restaurants, stores, places of resort and amusement and all other places to which the general public is invited. (•347-13)

Common carriers include airplanes, boats, buses, taxis, and any other mode of transportation offered for public use. (•347-13)

Suits by individuals; jurisdiction; venue: Any person injured by a violation of •347-13 may bring a civil action to recover three times the person's actual damages or $1,000, whichever sum is greater, for each violation. Any person bringing such an action shall also be entitled to recover the person's costs, together with reasonable attorneys' fees. An action under this section shall be brought in the circuit court of the district in which the violation is alleged to have occurred.

Violation: Any person, agent or corporation or agent thereof who violates the above rights is punishable under Hawaiian law. The Statute specifies that an official of a common carrier may be fined up to $1,000, and may be imprisoned for interfering with these rights. (•347-14)

Quarantine: There is a 120-day quarantine on all dogs entering Hawaii, including dog guides. The quarantine station, however, has two cottages available for use by dog guide users. Applications for their occupancy must be sent to the superintendent of the quarantine station and they will be assigned on a first-come, first-served basis. Dog guides may stay with their owners in these cottages, and can be worked on the quarantine station grounds. The dog guide user may enter and leave the station at any time, but the dog guide must be confined to the station during the quarantine period. The cost is limited to the regular charge levied for quarantining other dogs. (Policy No. A1-13)

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Idaho
Statute or Law:
Idaho Code, Title 56, Chapter 7, Sections 56-701 through 56-707, amended 1984

Idaho Statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all common carriers. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any property damage the dog might cause.

A blind person also has a legal right to equal employment opportunity in state service or in the service of the political subdivisions, including public schools, and in all other employment supported in whole or in part by public funds. (•56-707)

Public accommodations include hotels, lodging places, restaurants, stores, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the public is invited. (•56-703, •56-704)

Common carriers include airplanes, buses, trains, taxis, boats, and all other modes of transportation offered for public use. (•56-703, •56-704)

Violation: Any person, firm, corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable accordingly. (•56-706)

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Illinois
Statute or Law:
White Cane Law of 1969, Chapter 23, Sections 3361, 3363; Chapter, 38, Paragraph 65-1; Human Rights Act, Chapter 68, Paragraph 3-104.1; Illinois Vehicle Code, Chapter 95 1/2, Paragraph 11-1004

Illinois statutes guarantee a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in harness in all public accommodations and on all common carriers. A dog guide user also has a legal right to equal housing accommodation in regard to both rentals and sales. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damages the dog might cause to the premises. A blind person also has a legal right to equal employment in the service of the state or in its political subdivisions, and in any other employment supported in whole or part with public funds, unless the physical disability prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include public facilities, hotels, restaurants, stores, places of amusement and resort, and all other places to which the public is invited. (Chapter 23, •3363; Chapter 38, Par. 65-1)

Common carriers include trains, airplanes, boats, buses, taxis, and all other modes of transportation offered for public use. Common carriers may request identification and may also request muzzling. (Chapter 23, •3361)

Housing includes all rental property and other real property offered for sale, but there is no requirement that property be modified nor is the owner responsible for providing a higher degree of care than that furnished other persons. (Human Rights Act, Chapter 68, Par. 3-104.1)

The driver of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to any blind pedestrian accompanied by a dog guide. (Chapter 95 1/2, Par. 11-1004)

Violation: Any person, firm, or corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above rights is guilty of a Class C misdemeanor and punishable under the appropriate civil or criminal statute. (Chapter 38, paragraph 65-1)

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Indiana
Statute or Law:
Indiana Code, Sections 16-7-5-2 through 16-7-5-7, Section 16-7-5.5-4, amended 1988

Indiana law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations, which under previous statutes included all common carriers. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog may do to the premises.

Equal housing accommodations are guaranteed by Indiana law to dog guide users. (•16-7-5.5-4)

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, places of amusement and resort, and all other places or establishments that cater or offer their services, facilities, or goods to the general public. (•16-7-5-2)

A dog guide trainer, while engaged in the training process of a dog guide, is entitled to access to any public accommodation granted by this section, 1988. (•16-7-5-2(d))

Violation: Any person, firm, or corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights commits a Class C infraction and can be fined up to $100, or imprisoned up to three months, or both. (•16-7-5-3)

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Iowa
Statute or Law:
1987 Code of Iowa, Sections 321.333 and 321.334 (enacted prior to 1946); and Chapter 601D, Sections 601D.1 through 601D.9 (enacted in 1959)

Iowa statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public conveyances. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage caused to the premises by the dog. A blind person has a right to equal employment opportunity in the service of the state, or its political subdivisions, or in the public schools and in other employment supported in whole or part by public funds, unless the visual impairment prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include public facilities, hotels, restaurants, stores, places of amusement and resort, and all other places to which the public is invited. (•601D.4)

Public conveyances include airplanes, trains, boats, taxis, elevators, and all other modes of transportation offered for public use. (•601D.3)

The driver of a vehicle shall come to a complete stop for a pedestrian with a dog guide. (•321.333)

Violation: Any person, firm, corporation, or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a simple misdemeanor and punishable accordingly under Iowa law. Applicable fines are not less than $1 and not more than $100. (•601D.7)

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Kansas
Statute or Law:
K.S.A. 39-1101, Sections 39-1101 through 39-1106, amended in 1981

Kansas statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all common carriers. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog guide's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage to the premises that the dog might cause. It is Kansas state policy to ensure equal opportunity in employment to blind persons in its state service, or in the service of its political subdivisions, in public schools, and in all public employment supported in whole or in part by public funds, except where the disability prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include public buildings, hotels, lodging places, restaurants, stores, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the general public is invited. (•39-1101, •39-1102)

Common carriers include boats, airplanes, buses, trains, taxis, and all other modes of transportation offered for public use. (•39-1101, •39-1102)

Violation: Any person, firm, or corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable accordingly. (•39-1103)

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Kentucky
Statute or Law:
Kentucky Revised Statutes of 1990, Chapter 258.500, Sections 1 through 10; Penalty - Chapter 258.991, Chapter 189.575

Kentucky statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a dog guide trained by a recognized dog guide school, in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. The dog must be in harness and in the custody of the dog guide user. The dog guide user can be required to muzzle the dog guide and must have verification of the dog's training, such as an identification card issued by the particular school. The dog may not occupy a seat on a public conveyance, and the common carrier cannot levy an additional charge because of the dog guide's presence.

Public accommodations include public buildings, restaurants, theaters, places of amusement, stores, hotels, and all places to which the public is invited. (•1)

Public transportation includes trains, buses, airplanes, taxis, public elevators, and all other common carriers. (•2, •3)

The operator of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to any blind pedestrian accompanied by a dog guide. (•189.575)

Violation: Any person who violates the above enumerated rights is punishable by a fine not to exceed $100, nor less than $25, or imprisonment for not less than 10 days, nor more than 30 days, or both. (Chapter 258.991)

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Louisiana
Statute or Law:
Louisiana White Cane Law: Chapter 23, Acts of 1982, No. 518, Section 1, R.S. 46:1951 through 46:1954; Penalty - Acts of 1962, Number 33, Section 1, R.S. 21:52, amended in 1981

Louisiana statutes guarantee a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a dog guide trained by a dog guide school in all places of public accommodation and on all public conveyances. The dog may not occupy a seat and the dog guide user should have his or her identification card (furnished by the school that trained the dog) with him or her. A dog guide user also has a legal right to equal housing accommodations in regard to both rentals and sales.

A blind person also has a legal right to equal employment opportunity in state service or service of the political subdivision, including public schools and all other employment supported in whole or in part by public funds.

Public accommodations include hotels, lodging places, restaurants, stores, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the public is invited. (R.S. 46:1952)

Public conveyances include trains, buses, airplanes, taxis, streetcars, boats, and all other common carriers (R.S. 46:1952)

Housing includes any real property or portion thereof which has been offered for rent, lease, or compensation as a home, residence, or sleeping place, but shall not include single family residences which offer not more than one room for rent, lease, or furnish for compensation. (R.S. 46:1953)

Violation: Any person, firm, or corporation who interferes with the above rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable by a fine not to exceed $500, or imprisonment not to exceed 90 days, or both. In addition, the blind individual who has been discriminated against may sue for $500 damages for each offense in any court of competent jurisdiction. (R.S. 21:52)

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Maine
Maine Statutes: Model White Cane Law, Chapter 58, Public Laws of 1971, 17 M.R.S.A., Section 1311 through 1316, amended in 1981

Maine statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all modes of public transportation. No extra charge can be levied because of the presence of the dog guide, but the dog guide user is liable for any damages the dog might cause to the premises. Maine law also ensures the right of a blind person to equal employment in its state service, the service of its political subdivisions, in public schools, and in any employment supported in whole or part by public funds, unless the visual disability prevents the performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, motels, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the public is invited. (•1312)

Public conveyances include boats, trains, buses, streetcars, taxis, airplanes, and all other modes of transportation offered for public use. (•1312)

Violation: Any person, firm, or corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable accordingly under Maine law.

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Maryland
Statute or Law:
Maryland Statutes: White Cane Law, amended 1990, Article 30, Section 33; and Article 56, Section 192

Maryland statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all forms of public transportation.

Maryland law also guarantees equal housing accommodations to a dog guide user. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises. A landlord is not required to modify property or to maintain a higher degree of care than that provided to other persons. Maryland state policy ensures equal employment opportunity for blind persons in its state service, in the services of its political subdivisions, in public schools, and in employment supported in whole or part by public funds, except where a particular disability prevents performance of the work involved.

Maryland exempts dog guides from a licensing fee. (Article 56, •192)

The clerk will be satisfied that the dog for which the license is sought is a "dog guide," professionally trained to aid the blind and actually in use for such purpose. The license therefor shall be issued without the payment of any fee and the clerk shall inscribe across the face of the license in red ink the words, "Dog guide."

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, public buildings, stores, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the general public is invited. (Article 30, •33)

Public transportation includes trains, airplanes, boats, taxis, buses, and all other modes of conveyance offered for public use. (Article 30, •33)

Housing includes all property offered for rent, lease or compensation which is designed to be a home or sleeping place, but does not include a single family dwelling whose occupants offer no more than one room for rent. (Article 30, •33)

Violation: Any person, firm or corporation who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable by a fine not to exceed $500 for each offense. (Article 30, •33)

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Massachusetts
Statute or Law:
Massachusetts Statutes, Chapter 272-98A; Chapter 151C, Section 2, Paragraph e, 1972; Chapter 151B, Section 4; Chapter 90, Section 14A. Massachusetts law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public conveyances. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence. Muzzling can be required.

A blind person is guaranteed the right under Massachusetts law to be accompanied by a dog guide in an educational institution.

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, places of amusement, and all places to which the public is invited. (Chapter 272-98A)

Public conveyances include trains, airplanes, buses, taxis, and all common carriers. (Chapter 272-98A)

A blind person with a dog guide is guaranteed equal housing (Chapter 151B, •4).

The driver of a vehicle must yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian with a dog guide.

Violation: A person who interferes with the rights enumerated above is punishable by a fine not to exceed $300. (Chapter 272-98A)

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Michigan
Statute or Law: Michigan Statutes, 1953, Section 750.502c (last amended in 1984 by Public Act 110)

Michigan statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a dog guide in harness in all public accommodations and educational institutions and on all public conveyances. The dog guide user can be required to produce identification, such as the I.D. card furnished by the dog guide school from which the dog was obtained.

Public accommodations include trains, buses, taxis, elevators, boats, and other common carriers. (•750.502c)

Violation: Any person who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and therefore punishable under Michigan law. (•750.502c)

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Minnesota
Statute or Law:
Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 256C, Sections 256C.01 through 256C.06, amended 1990

Minnesota statutes guarantee a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public conveyances. A dog guide user also is guaranteed the right to equal accommodation in housing. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog guide's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog guide causes to the premises. A landlord is not required to modify his property nor maintain a higher standard of care than that provided other persons. Minnesota state policy also ensures equal employment opportunity to blind persons in its state service, or the service of its political subdivisions, in public schools, and in all employment supported in whole or part by public funds, except when the particular disability prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include hotels, public buildings, restaurants, places of resort and amusement, stores, and all other places to which the public is invited. (•256C.02)

Public conveyances include airplanes, boats, taxis, trains, buses, and all other modes of transportation offered for public use. (•256C.02)

Housing includes any real property offered for rent, lease, or compensation. (•256C.025)

The service dog must be capable of being properly identified as from a recognized school for Seeing Eye dogs or dog guides.

Violation: Any person or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable therefor under Minnesota law. (•256C.05)

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Mississippi
Statute or Law:
Mississippi Statutes, Code of 1972 (Annotated), Chapters 451 and 515; Chapter 381 Laws of 1974, Sections 43-6-1 through 43-6-13

Mississippi statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises. Mississippi state policy ensures equal employment opportunity for blind persons in its state service, in the service of its political subdivisions, in public schools and in employment supported in whole or part by public funds, except when the particular disability prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include hotels, inns, restaurants, stores, places of resort and amusement, and all places to which the general public is invited. (Chapter 381, •43-6-5)

Public transportation includes boats, airplanes, taxis, trains, buses, and all other common carriers. (Chapter 381, •43-6-5)

Violation: Any person, firm, or corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable by a fine not to exceed $100, or imprisonment for not more than 60 days, or both. (Chapter 381, •43-6-11)

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Missouri
Statute or Law:
Missouri Statutes, RSMo 1990, Sections 209.150, 209.160, 209.190, 304.080, 304.110; 8.740

Missouri statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. A dog guide user also has a legal right to equal housing accommodation in all housing. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises. A landlord is not required to modify the property nor to provide a higher degree of care than that provided other tenants.

Public accommodations include hotels, stores, restaurants, places of resort and amusement and all other places to which the general public is invited. (•209.150)

Public transportation includes airplanes, buses, boats, trains, taxis, and all other modes of conveyance offered for public use. (•209.150)

Housing includes any real property or a portion thereof offered for rent, lease or compensation as a home, residence, or sleeping place, but does not include a single family dwelling whose occupants offer not more than one room for rent. (•209.190)

The driver of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to the pedestrian with a dog guide.

The blind vendor who is authorized to operate vending facilities may keep his dog guide with him on the property while operating the vending facility. (L.1981S.B 165 •9)(8.740)

Violation: Any person, firm, or corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable accordingly under Missouri law, including a fine not exceeding $25 and costs of prosecution and, in default of payment thereof, shall undergo imprisonment not exceeding 10 days. (•209.160)

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Montana
Statute or Law:
Montana Statutes, Human Rights Law, passed in 1947 and last amended in 1991, Sections 49-4-202 through 49-4-217

Montana statutes guarantee a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. A dog guide user also has a legal right to equal housing accommodation in all housing. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises. A landlord is not required to modify the property nor to provide a higher degree of care than that provided other persons. Also, Montana state policy ensures a blind person the right to equal employment opportunity in its state service, the service of its political subdivisions, the public schools or employment supported in whole or part by public funds, except when the particular disability prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include hotels, public buildings, stores, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the general public is invited. (•49-4-211, •49-4-214)

Public transportation includes trains, airplanes, buses, boats, taxis, and all modes of transportation offered for public use. (•49-4-211, •49-4-214)

Housing includes any real property or portion thereof which has been offered for rent, lease or compensation as a home, residence or sleeping place, but does not include single family dwellings, the occupants of which have offered not more than one room for rent. (•49-4-212, •49-4-214)

The driver of a vehicle will yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian with a dog guide. (•49-4-216) Violators will be fined not more than $25. (•49-4-217)

Violation: Any person, firm, or corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the rights enumerated above is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable accordingly under Montana law. (•49-4-215)

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Nebraska
Statute or Law:
Nebraska Statutes, Chapter 20, Sections 20-126 through 20-133 (enacted in 1971; amended in 1975, 1977, 1978, 1980, and 1983, and reissued in 1987)

Nebraska law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all transportation. A dog guide user has a legal right to equal housing accommodation in all housing. No extra fee can be charged because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises. A landlord can require a security deposit against damage, but the deposit cannot exceed one-fourth of one month's rent. State policy ensures equal employment opportunity to blind persons in its state service, the service of its political subdivisions, in public schools and in any employment supported in whole or part by public funds, except when the particular disability prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include hotels, public buildings, stores, restaurants, places of resort and amusement, and all places to which the public is invited. (•20-127, •20-133)

Public transportation includes trains, airplanes, boats, buses, taxis, and all other modes of conveyance offered for public use. (•20-127)

Housing includes all property designed as a home or sleeping place and offered for rent, lease, or compensation, but does not include single family dwellings. (•20-131.01, •20-131.02, •20-131.03, •20-131.04)

Violation: Any person, firm, or corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a Class III misdemeanor and punishable accordingly under Nebraska law. (•20-129)

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Nevada
Statute or Law:
Nevada Revised Statutes (last amended in 1991), Sections 118.105, 613.330, 651.050, 651.070, 651.075, 651.080, 651.090, 704.143, 704.145, 706.361, and 706.366; and Chapter 426

Under Nevada statutes, a blind person has a legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises. A dog guide user who operates a vending stand has the right to keep his or her dog with him or her on the vending stand premises. A dog guide user has a legal right to equal housing accommodation and can enforce this right through injunctive relief with damages. An identification card issued by a dog guide school is sufficient proof that the dog is specially trained in guide work.

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, places of resort and amusement, and all places to which the general public is invited. (•651.050, •651.070, •651.075)

Public transportation includes trains, buses, airplanes, taxis, and all other forms of public conveyance offered for public use. (•651.070, •704.143, •704.145, •706.361, •706.366)

Housing covers rental properties. The statute contains a provision that the law is to be interpreted liberally. (•118.105)

Violation: Any person who interferes with the legal rights of a blind person as outlined under Nevada law is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable accordingly. (•613.330, •651.075, •651.080, •651.090, •704.145)

In an action brought under this section, the court may (a) grant any equitable relief it considers appropriate, including temporary, preliminary, or permanent injunctive relief, against the defendant; (b) award costs and reasonable attorneys' fees to the prevailing party. (•651.090, 1991)

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New Hampshire
Statute or Law:
New Hampshire Statutes, 1990, Chapter 167-C, Sections 167-C:1 through 167-C:5; Chapter 167-D, Sections 167-D:4, 167-D:5

New Hampshire Statutes guarantee a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises. State policy ensures equal employment opportunity to blind persons in its state service, the service of its political subdivisions, in public schools, and in any employment supported in whole or part by public funds, except when the particular disability prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include hotels, public buildings, stores, restaurants, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the general public is invited. (•167-C:2)

Public transportation includes trains, airplanes, buses, taxis, and other modes of conveyance offered for public use. (•167-C:2)

A dog guide or service dog trainer shall have the same rights with respect to access to public facilities. (•167-D:4)

Any dog guide user shall provide the dog with a leash and harness colored international orange. (•167-D:5)

Violation: Any person, firm, or corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and can be fined up to $25. (•167-C:3)

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New Jersey
Statute or Law:
New Jersey Statutes: P.L. 1945, c. 169 and P.L. 1971, c. 130 (amended and supplemented by P.L. 1977, c. 456; P.L. 1980, c. 46; P.L. 1981, c. 391; and P.L. 1983, c. 485)

New Jersey anti-discrimination laws guarantee a blind person the right to be accompanied by a dog guide in all public facilities, in employment, and on public conveyances. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises. A blind person with a dog guide has a legal right to equal housing opportunity in the rental, lease, or purchase of housing, and cannot be charged extra because of the dog guide's presence. A landlord is not required to modify the premises nor to provide a higher standard of care than that offered other tenants.

Public facilities include stores, boardwalks, places of recreation, educational institutions, camps, restaurants, hotels, and all other places of public accommodation to which the public is permitted or invited. (N.J.S.A. 10:5-29)

Public conveyances include airplanes, trains, buses, boats, taxis, and all other modes of transportation offered for public use, but the Board of Public Utilities may promulgate reasonable regulations governing the presence of dog guides on buses and other public utilities. (N.J.S.A. 48:3-33)

Housing accommodations include any property designed for residential use, whether for rent, lease or sale, except single family private dwellings whose occupants offer no more than one room for rent. (N.J.S.A. 10:5-29.2)

Violation: Any person who interferes with the above enumerated rights is subject to a fine of no less than $100 and no more than $500 for each offense. (N.J.S.A. 10:5-29.5)

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New Mexico


Statute or Law:
New Mexico Statutes, Article 7, Sections 28-7-1 through 28-7-17. White Cane Law (enacted in 1978), amended 1986.

New Mexico statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog guide's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damages the dog might cause to the premises. New Mexico state policy also ensures a blind person equal employment opportunity in its state service, the service of its political subdivisions, in public schools, or in employment supported in whole or part by public funds, except when the particular disability prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, public buildings, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the general public is invited. (•28-7-3)

Public transportation includes trains, airplanes, buses, boats, taxis, and all forms of conveyance offered for public use. (•28-7-3)

Violation: Any person, firm, or corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable accordingly under New Mexico law. (•28-7-5)

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New York


Statute or Law:
New York Statutes: Civil Rights Law, Article 4-B, Sections 47 through 47c, 1986

New York law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a dog guide in all public accommodations, in employment, and on public transportation. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog guide's presence, but the dog must be in harness and the dog guide user can be asked to produce an identification card.

A blind person who possesses a dog guide is entitled to equal housing accommodations and cannot be charged a fee because of the dog guide.

Public accommodations include resorts, theaters, restaurants, stores, hotels, places of recreation, and all other places to which the public is invited.

Public transportation includes taxis, subways, trains, buses, boats, airplanes, and all other modes of conveyance offered for public use. (•47)

Housing accommodations include public and private rental properties designed as sleeping quarters or residences. (•47)

Employment includes state service or that of its political subdivisions and all other employment activity. Equal employment opportunity includes prohibition against discrimination based on blindness. (•47a)

Violation: Any owner, manager, or employee who interferes with the above enumerated rights is subject to prosecution under several New York State statutes. (•47c)

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North Carolina


Statute or Law: No information available. please check back for updates.

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North Dakota


Statute or Law:
North Dakota Statutes: North Dakota Century Code of 1967(last amended 1985), Chapter 25-13, Sections 25-13-01 through 25-13-05

North Dakota statutes guarantee a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public conveyances. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises. State statutory policy also ensures a blind person equal employment opportunity in state service, or the service of its political subdivisions and public schools, or in employment supported in whole or part by public funds, unless the visual impairment prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include hotels, lodging places, places of resort and amusement, stores, restaurants, and other facilities to which the general public is invited. (•25-13-02)

Public conveyances include trains, airplanes, taxis, buses, boats, and other modes of transportation offered for public use. (•25-13-02)

Violation: Any person, firm, or corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the legal rights enumerated above is guilty of a Class A misdemeanor and punishable accordingly. (•25-13-04)

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Ohio


Statute or Law:
Ohio Revised Code, 1979, Sections 955.011 and 955.43, amended 1984

Ohio statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public conveyances. No extra fee can be levied because of the dog guide's presence. A dog may not occupy a seat on a common carrier. Dog guides are exempt from licensing fees.

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the general public is invited. (•955.43)

Public conveyances include taxis, trains, airplanes, buses, boats, and all other modes of transportation offered for pubic use. (•955.43)

Violation: Any person who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree and is punishable under Ohio law accordingly. (•955.99)

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Oklahoma


Statute or Law:
Oklahoma Statutes, enacted in 1968, amended in 1981, 1985, 1988, and 1989, Title 7, Chapter 1, Sections 19.1 and 19.2

Oklahoma statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. No extra charge can be levied because of the presence of a dog guide, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises.

Public accommodations include stores, restaurants, hotels, cafes, and all other places to which the public is invited. (•19.1)

Public transportation includes public elevators, trains, airplanes, boats, buses, taxis, and all other modes of public conveyance. (•19.1)

Violation: Any person who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable consequently under Oklahoma law. (•19.2)

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Oregon


Statute or Law: Oregon Revised Statutes, 1967, Sections 346.610, 346.620, and 346.630, last amended in 1989
Oregon statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. No extra charge can be levied because of a dog guide's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises. Dog guides are exempt from licensing fees.

Landlords must provide equal housing accommodations to dog guide owners, and may not assess additional rent nor charge a non-refundable deposit because of a dog guide's presence. Violation can result in a $200 fine along with court costs and reasonable attorneys' fees. (•345.630)

Public accommodations include restaurants, stores, hotels, and all facilities to which the public is invited. (•346.610, •346.620)

Public transportation includes buses, trains, taxis, airplanes, and all other conveyances offered for public use. (•346.610, •346.620)

Violation: Any person who interferes with the above enumerated rights is subject to the penalties provided in ORS 346.991. A blind person may maintain an action pursuant to ORS 346.630 for compensatory damages and attorneys' fees and court costs, if any landlord refuses to rent a dwelling unit on the basis of the person's use or possession of such a dog guide. No blind person shall be required to pay an additional fee or an excessive deposit for the dog guide.

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Pennsylvania


Statute or Law:
Pennsylvania Statutes, P.L. 208, Act 72, 8/67 amended 6/72, Sections 1 through 11; Penalty - Title 18, Section 1, 1980

Pennsylvania anti-discrimination statutes guarantee a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a dog guide in all accommodations which are made available for public use. The statutes further guarantee equal housing accommodation to dog guide users in both the rental and purchase of housing.

Public accommodations under Pennsylvania law and regulations include restaurants, hotels, places of resort and amusement, and public transportation. (•3)

Housing includes rental and leased residential property, as well as negotiations covering the purchase of property. (•5)

Violation: Enforcement of the above enumerated rights is available through the state's commission on human rights, and a person who practices unlawful discrimination is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable by a fine, imprisonment, or both. (•11; Title 18, •1)

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Rhode Island


Statute or Law:
Rhode Island Statutes, 1975, Chapter 9.1, Sections 31-18-14, 39-2-13, 39-2-14, 40-9.1-1, 40-9.1-2, and 40-9.1-3, amended 1990; Chapter 11, Sections 4-13-16.1

Rhode Island statutes guarantee a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises.

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the public is invited. (•40-9.1-1, •40-9.1-2)

Any dog guide may enter any public facility if the dog is clearly identified as such by a yellow harness and trained by a recognized training school. (•39-2-13)

Public transportation includes buses, trains, airplanes, taxis, elevators, and all other modes of conveyance offered for public use. (•49-9.1-1, •40-9.1-2)

Vehicles will yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian with a dog guide. (•31-18-14)

Violation: Any person who interferes with the above enumerated rights is subject to a fine not to exceed $500 upon conviction. (•39-2-14, •40-9.1-3)

The owner or keeper of a dog which kills or bites a dog guide or bites its blind owner, will be liable to the blind person aggrieved for double all damages sustained, to be recovered in a civil action with the costs of the suit. (•4-13-16.1)

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South Carolina


Statute or Law:
South Carolina Statutes, 1976, Chapter 33, Sections 43-33-10 though 43-33-70, amended 1987

South Carolina statutes guarantee a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. Dog guide users are also guaranteed equal housing accommodations. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog guide's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises. Landlords are not required to modify their property, nor to provide a higher degree of care than that provided other tenants. State policy also endorses the right of a blind person to equal employment opportunity in state service, or the service of its political subdivisions and public schools, and in employment supported in whole or part by public funds, except when the visual disability prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include stores, hotels, restaurants, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the public is invited. (•43-33-20)

Public transportation includes taxis, trains, airplanes, buses, and all other forms of transportation offered for public use. (•43-33-20)

Housing accommodations include all real property offered for rent or lease as a residence or sleeping place, except for a single family dwelling, whose occupants offer no more than one room for rent. (•43-33-70)

Violation: Any person who interferes with the legal rights enumerated above is guilty of a misdemeanor. (•43-33-40)

South Dakota


Statute or Law:
South Dakota Statutes, SDCL 20-13-23.1 through 20-13-23.4, last amended in 1986

South Dakota law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a dog guide in all public accommodations. A dog guide user also has a legal right to rent or lease an apartment or other residential housing without discrimination. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog guide's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises.

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, and all other places to which the general public is invited. (•20-13-23.1, •20-13-23.2)

All modes of transportation are generally included within the definition of public accommodations. (•20-13-23.1, •20-13-23.2)

Violation: Anyone who interferes with the above enumerated rights violates South Dakota law.

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Tennessee


Statute or Law:
Tennessee Statutes, Acts of 1955, Title 62, Chapter 7, Sections 62-7-112; and 55-8-180

Tennessee statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in harness in all public accommodations and on all public conveyances. A dog guide user is also guaranteed the legal right to all housing accommodations. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog guide's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises. The dog guide user may be requested to present for inspection the identification card furnished by dog guide training institutions to their graduates.

Public accommodations under Tennessee law include such facilities as stores, theaters, motion picture houses, elevators, public transportation, restaurants, hotels, public educational institutions, and other places to which the general public is invited. (•62-7-112)

A pedestrian being led by a dog guide has the right-of-way crossing a public street. (•55-8-180)

Violation: Anyone who interferes with the above enumerated legal rights is guilty of a misdemeanor. (•62-717)

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Texas


Statute or Law:
Texas Statutes, Title 8, Chapter 121, Sections 121.001 through 121.009, amended 1989

Texas anti-discrimination statutes guarantee a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in harness in all public facilities. A dog guide user has a legal right to equal housing accommodation in all housing offered for rent, lease, or compensation. The landlord need not modify the premises, nor is a higher standard of care required than that provided other tenants. No extra fee can be levied because of the dog guide's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might do to the premises. Equal employment opportunity is also guaranteed, except where the visual impairment prevents performance of the work involved.

Under Texas statutory law, the definition of public facilities includes hotels, stores, restaurants, college dormitories, places of resort, recreation and amusement, public buildings, railroads, buses, boats, airplanes, taxis, and all other common carriers or places to which the public is invited. (•121.002, •121.003)

Housing accommodations include any real property, in whole or part, designed or used as a home, residence, or sleeping place, except for a single family dwelling, the occupants of which offer for rent no more than one room. (•121.003)

Violation: Any person, firm, association, or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and is punishable by a fine of not less than $100 or more than $300. In addition, the dog guide user whose civil rights have been violated may proceed in any court of competent jurisdiction to recover personal damages with the presumption that at least $100 worth of damage has been sustained. (•121.004)

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Utah


Statute or Law:
Utah Statutes, 1969, Chapter 30, Sections 26-30-1 through 26-30-5, amended 1986

Utah statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. Utah statutes also guarantee a blind person with a dog guide the right to equal housing accommodations. No extra fee may be charged for the dog's presence, but the landlord may require a reasonable deposit as security, and the dog guide user shall be liable for any damage to the premises caused by the dog guide. A person renting, leasing, or selling private or public housing need not modify the premises in any way to accommodate a visually handicapped tenant. The dog guide user may be asked to present for inspection the identification card provided by the dog guide school from which the dog was obtained.

Utah state policy also endorses the right of equal employment opportunity to a blind person in its state service, or the service of its political subdivisions, and public schools and in employment supported in whole or part by public funds, except when the visual impairment prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include stores restaurants, hotels, lodges, public buildings, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the public is invited. (•26-30-1, •26-30-2)

Public transportation includes airplanes, buses, trains, boats, taxis, and all other modes of transportation offered for public use. (•26-30-1, •26-30-2)

Housing accommodations include any real property, whether public or private. (•26-30-1, •26-30-2)

Violation: Any person or agent of any person who interferes with the above enumerated legal rights is guilty of a Class C misdemeanor and punishable accordingly. (•26-30-4)

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Virginia


Statute or Law:
Virginia Statutes; Code of Virginia, Chapter 9, Sections 51.5-44-51.5-46, amended 1990

Virginia statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. A dog guide user is also guaranteed equal housing accommodation, but the landlord is not required to modify the property or provide a higher standard of care than that provided other tenants. No extra charge can be levied because of a dog guide's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog might cause to the premises. Dog guides are exempt from licensing fees. Also, it is the policy of the State of Virginia to endorse equal employment opportunity to blind persons in its state service, the service of its political subdivisions and public schools, and in employment supported in whole or part by public funds, except when the visual disability prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include hotels, stores, restaurants, places of resort and amusement, and any other place to which the general public is invited. (•51.5-44)

Public transportation includes airplanes, boats, trains, buses, taxis, common carriers, and all other modes of conveyance offered for public use. (•51.5-44)

Housing accommodations include any real property or portion thereof designed or used as a home, residence, or sleeping place offered for rent, lease, or compensation, except for a single family dwelling, the occupants of which offer no more than one room for rent. (•51.5-45)

Violation: In any action in which the petitioner is represented by the Department for Rights of Virginians with Disabilities or the Attorney General's office, no attorneys' fees shall be awarded, nor shall the Department for Rights of Virginians with Disabilities have the authority to institute any class action under this chapter.

Any person, firm, corporation, or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is liable for affirmative equitable relief as is appropriate and to award compensatory damages and to award to a prevailing party reasonable attorney's fees, except that a defendant shall not be entitled to an award of attorneys' fees unless the court finds that the claim was frivolous. Compensatory damages shall not include damages for pain and suffering. Punitive or exemplary damages shall not be awarded.

An action may be commenced pursuant to this section at any time within one year of the occurrence of any violation of rights under this chapter. However, such action shall be forever barred unless such claimant or his agent, attorney, or representative has commenced such action or has filed by registered mail a written statement of the nature of the claim with the potential defendant within 180 days of the occurrence. (•51.5-46)

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Vermont


Statute or Law:
Vermont Statutes, 1974 (last amended in 1991), Sections 4502, 1057

Vermont law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a dog guide in all places of public accommodation. The dog must be in harness. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence.

Public accommodations include any establishment which offers services, goods, or facilities to the public. The term public accommodation covers stores, restaurants, hotels, and common carriers. (•4502)

The driver of a vehicle will yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian with a dog guide. (•1057)

Violation: Vermont law prohibits interference in the exercise of the above enumerated rights by any owner, operator, employee, or agent of a public accommodation. (•4502)

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Washington


Statute or Law:
Washington Statutes, White Cane Law, Chapter 70.84, Sections 70.84.010 through 70.84.900, last amended in 1985

Washington statutory law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in harness in all places of public accommodation and on all public transportation. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog's presence. State policy also ensures equal employment opportunity in state service, in the service of its political subdivisions and public schools, and in employment supported in whole or part by public funds, except when the visual disability prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, public buildings, places of resort, amusement, and assemblage, and any other place to which the general public is invited. (•70.84.010, •70.84.030)

Public transportation includes trains, buses, airplanes, boats, taxis, and any other common carriers or modes of conveyance offered for public use. (•70.84.010, •70.84.030)

Violation: Any person, firm, corporation or any agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable under Washington law accordingly. (•70.84.070)

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West Virginia


Statute or Law:
West Virginia Statutes, White Cane Law 1969, Chapter 150, Article 15, Sections 5-15-1 through 5-15-8

West Virginia law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in harness in any public accommodation and on all public transportation. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog guide's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage caused by the dog. State policy also endorses equal employment opportunity in its state service, or in the service of its political subdivisions and public schools, and in any employment supported in whole or part by public funds, except when the disability prevents performance of the work involved.

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the public is invited. (•5-14-5)

Public transportation includes trains, boats, buses, taxis, airplanes, and all other common carriers and modes of conveyance offered for public use. (•5-15-4)

Violation: Any person, firm, corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and subject to a fine. (•5-15-8)

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Wisconsin


Statute or Law:
Wisconsin Statutes, 1990, Chapter 94, Sections 174.055 and 174.056

Wisconsin law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in harness in all public accommodations. The dog guide user can be requested to submit for inspection the identification card provided by dog guide schools to their graduates.

Public accommodations under Wisconsin law include hotels, inns, stores, restaurants, public conveyances on land and water, places of resort and recreation, and all other facilities and places to which the general public is invited. (•174.056)

A blind person may be asked to present, for inspection, credentials issued by a school for training dogs for the blind. (•174.056)

Dog guides will be exempt from any dog license tax. (•174.055)

Violation: Any person or owner, lessee, employee, or agent of a public accommodation who interferes with the above enumerated rights may be fined up to $100, or imprisoned for 30 days, or both. (•174.056)

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Wyoming


Statute or Law:
Wyoming Statutes, 1967, Sections 35-13-101 through 35-13-204

Wyoming statutes guarantee a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in all public accommodations and on all public transportation. No extra charge can be levied because of the dog guide's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damages the dog guide might cause to the premises.

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, public buildings, places of resort and amusement, and any other place to which the public is invited. (•35-13-201)

The driver of a vehicle must yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian with a dog guide. (•35-13-202)

Public transportation includes buses, trains, taxis, airplanes, boats, and any other mode of public conveyance offered for public use. (•35-13-204)

Violation: Any person, firm or corporation or agent thereof who interferes with the above enumerated rights is guilty of a misdemeanor and may be fined not more than $750. (•35-13-203)