Health and Safety Excuse Used to Bar Me from a Shop

Was visiting Tissington in Derbyshire yesterday and had just completed a country walk. Therefore I had Jade with me but minus her harness as she had been free running.

My friends decided they wanted to look in a shop. The owner was near the door, so out of courtesy I told him that Jade was a guide dog and asked if I could go in even though I didn’t have her harness. I was told no because people had been known to fall over dogs in his shop.

He got away with it and I stayed outside. For two reasons. Firstly I was with relatively new friends and didn’t want to cause a scene on our first outing together. Secondly as I didn’t have Jade’s harness I couldn’t really argue the point that I needed her to work.

So he’s got away with it. He now probably thinks its perfectly OK to tell guide dog owners to stay outside. This doesn’t sit easily with me.


About Mel Griffiths

I live and work in Nottingham, England and am blind. This blog is often centred around things that happen to me because of being blind. This is my space to write and sometimes people will disagree with what I write, but its the one place I have in which to be frank and honest. I also like to reflect on the funnier side of life from time to time.
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One Response to Health and Safety Excuse Used to Bar Me from a Shop

  1. fleurette67 says:

    I understand why that shopkeeper got away with it, but …
    Hi Mel! I can understand why you let the shopkeeper get away with banning you from walking Jade into his shop, given that you couldn’t prove she was a guide dog without having her harness with you and that you didn’t want to cause a scene, but I agree with you that this man will probably now think it’s fine to bar all guide dog owners from his shop. Although I am not a guide dog owner myself, I don’t think that guide dogs should be prevented from entering any shop, especially with them being so well-trained, with no risk of the guide dog getting out of control which could happen with someone’s ordinary pet. I do suggest, though, that if you ever go to that area again, and go to that shop again, you should have Jade’s harness with you. Anyway, isn’t that man’s excuse for not letting Jade into his shop a bit feeble? I mean, how many people actually trip over dogs, especially over well-trained guide dogs? Not that many, I bet! Sure, not everybody likes dogs, but for so many blind people a guide dog is a constant companion when the blind person is out and about, therefore guide dogs should definitely not be discriminated against in this way.

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