ACB recognizes DOT on enforcement priorities of service animals

American Council of the Blind has commended US Department of Transportation (DOT) Enforcement Office regarding its statement of enforcement priorities for service animals, the company said.

In this statement, DOT provides greater clarity to air travel passengers with service animals, as well as airlines, about the DOT´s interpretation and enforcement of the existing service animal rules.

Since 2015, ACB has supported constructing inclusive service animal policies with DOT and the airlines that are true to the Air Carrier Access Act. ACB is pleased that DOT has constructed a final enforcement statement that will protect the rights of passengers with service animals for the entirety of their flying experience. The DOT´s final enforcement statement contains provisions that:

-Prohibit airlines from requiring advanced notice that a passenger is traveling with a service animal for flights less than eight hours. This guarantees passengers with service animals greater flexibility in air travel.
-Consistent with the Air Carrier Access Act, credible verbal assurance is proof that a person with a disability is traveling with a service animal.
-Prohibit airline categorical restrictions on service animals based exclusively on breed and age.
-Limit airline requests for documentation regarding service animal vaccinations, training and behavior to reasonable requests to determine whether a specific animal poses a direct threat to the health and safety of others.

The American Council of the Blind is a national grassroots consumer organization representing Americans who are blind and visually impaired. With 70 affiliates, ACB strives to increase the independence, security, equality of opportunity, and to improve quality of life for all blind and visually impaired people.