Discrimination against assistance dog owners
“This Assembly notes with concern that discrimination against assistance dog owners is widespread, with three quarters of those owners surveyed by Guide Dogs for the Blind reporting that they had been refused access to services at some point because they had an assistance dog with them. This Assembly also notes evidence collected by BBC London Television on the prevalence of this problem in London in 2014.
“This Assembly further notes that while owners of assistance dogs are entitled by law to access goods and services without discrimination, the law in practice is not effective with the worst offenders of this legislation being private hire drivers, with a small minority of offending drivers having a devastating effect on assistance dogs owners.
“This Assembly backs the Guide Dogs for the Blind campaign to ensure that there are far more effective sanctions against drivers who refuse access, noting that the average fine currently imposed is a modest £195.
“This Assembly urges the Chair of the London Assembly to write to the Secretary of State for Transport expressing support for the penalty for refusing carriage to be amended to a level 4 fine, in keeping with offences such as ticket touting, so as to ensure that both drivers and magistrates are fully aware of the unacceptable nature of refusing access to assistance dog owners in London.”