Equality training should be made mandatory

Kirsten supports equality for all.
Kirsten supports equality for all.

Kirsten Oswald MP recently attended a Guide Dogs event to show her support for taxi and minicab drivers receiving disability equality training when getting their licence.

At the event held at Westminster, guide dog owners told the MP for East Renfrewshire how taxi and minicab drivers had refused to carry them because they had their guide dog with them.

Under the Equality Act 2010, it is illegal for a taxi or minicab driver to refuse to carry an assistance dog.

However, research by the Gude Dogs found that 42 per cent of people living with sight loss were turned away by a taxi or minicab in the last year because of their guide dog.

The research also uncovered that 38 per cent of assistance dog owners have illegally been asked to pay an extra fare for carrying their dog.

Guide Dogs is now calling for disability equality training to be made a requirement for all taxi and minicab drivers across the country to help them understand the rights and needs of disabled people and how to welcome assistance dog owners.

Kirsten said: “Taxi accessibility for disabled people is of interest to many living in East Renfrewshire, and has been an area of discussion between myself and East Renfrewshire Disability Action.

“I welcome their call for more accessible taxis in East Renfrewshire, and I know that any moves to provide disability equality training will be very welcome.”