[tabi] Re: OCT 10 Guide Dog Protest

  • From: "Sila Miller" <Silamiller@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "Johnnie Slaton" <slatonj52@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 8 Oct 2014 20:11:29 -0400

Hello everyone,
Further information is below. Also, my sincere apologies to Tiffany for 
mistaking her last name. 
Sila 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
  Contact: Marion Gwizdala, President

                   National Association of Guide dog Users

                   National Federation of the Blind

                   813-626-2789

                   President@xxxxxxxxx 

   

  NATIONAL FEDERATION OF THE BLIND PROTESTS DISCRIMINATION BY STATE SECURITY 
CONTRACTOR

  Tallahassee, Fla. (October 7, 2014): On Friday, October 10, from 2:00 - 4:00 
p.m., members of the National Federation of the Blind will gather outside the 
Museum of Florida History, located at 500 S. Bronough Street in Tallahassee, to 
protest an attempt to forcibly remove a blind woman who uses a guide dog from 
the museum. The incident occurred when Tiffany Baylor, a blind woman who uses a 
guide dog, visited the museum on the first day of Meet the Blind Month, a 
nationally recognized campaign of the National Federation of the Blind. 
Governor Rick Scott has also proclaimed October as Disability Awareness Month. 
Ms. Baylor was visiting the museum to view a special tactile quilt that was on 
display at the museum. One security officer grabbed the dog's harness, 
asserting he needed more proof than her credible assurance, in spite of the 
fact that the harness was clearly  marked with the words "Guide Dogs for the 
Blind". When Ms. Baylor attempted to educate the officers about the Americans 
with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Florida law regarding service animals, the 
officers asserted that those laws did not apply in state buildings.

  "We are here to demand that criminal charges be brought against the offending 
officers as set forth in Florida law," said Marion Gwizdala, president of the 
National Association of Guide Dog Users (NAGDU), the National Federation of the 
Blind's special interest group for guide dog users. "We also demand that they 
be appropriately disciplined by their employer, that clear written policies be 
created, and that all state staff and contract personnel receive training on 
these policies and the laws concerning service dogs." 

  Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act states, "No qualified 
individual with a disability shall, by reason of such disability, be excluded 
from participation in or be denied the benefits of the services, programs, or 
activities of a public entity, or be subjected to discrimination by any such 
entity" and allows disabled individuals to be accompanied by a service dog in 
any place the general public is allowed. Florida statute makes it a second 
degree misdemeanor to interfere with the rights of a disabled individual or to 
obstruct, intimidate, or otherwise jeopardize the safety of a service animal or 
its user. The implementing regulations of the ADA and the pertinent sections of 
Florida statute are available upon request.

  # # # 



  About the National Federation of the Blind

   

  The National Federation of the Blind knows that blindness is not the 
characteristic that defines you or your future. Every day we raise the 
expectations of blind people, because low expectations create obstacles between 
blind people and our dreams. You can live the life you want; blindness is not 
what holds you back.

   

  About the National Association of Guide Dog Users

  The National Association of Guide dog Users is the nation's leading 
organization for blind people who use guide dogs.  NAGDU is a strong and proud 
division of the National Federation of the Blind. NAGDU conducts public 
awareness campaigns on issues of guide dog use, provides advocacy support for 
guide dog handlers who face discrimination, supports sound policy and effective 
legislation to protect the rights of guide dog users, offers educational 
programs to school and civic organizations, and functions as an integral part 
of the National Federation of the Blind. For more information about the 
National Association of Guide Dog Users and to support our work, you can visit 
our website at HTTP://WWW.NAGDU.ORG or send an email message to Info@xxxxxxxxx.

   

   

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