Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Update on This Morning's Access Dispute

I spoke to the manager in person when he came in. He said the employee had already talked to him about it. He said the employee didn't know it was a service dog until I told him. I pointed out the fact that Isaac was wearing his vest which is clearly marked and said that if the employee didn't know that meant he was a service dog, the appropriate thing to do would be to ask "Is that a service dog?" rather than shout "You can't bring your dog in here!" The manager seemed to think the employee's response was reasonable, though, since I hadn't yet told him Isaac was a service dog.

The manager also said last week they had a problem with someone bringing in a service dog and no one knew it was a service dog and some other customers were upset about the dog being in the breakfast area. I said that was not really my problem and that the employee still did not handle the situation correctly. After thinking about it, it seems to me that if they are having "issues" related to service dogs on a weekly basis, their staff could really, really use some training on this subject. Unfortunately, the manager doesn't seem to understand it at all himself so I don't think he will be able to educate his staff.

The manager suggested I could help prevent confusion by calling the front desk to let them know I was going to bring my dog into the lobby before I came in. I said I am absolutely not going to do that, no other guest is expected to call the front desk before entering the lobby and the ADA says I do not need to do that. The manager apologized but didn't seem very sincere.

So I went back to my room and called the corporate office and complained. They said they will investigate and notify me by next week of what they find and how they plan to resolve the issue.
 I suspect the corporate office contacted the manager at my hotel almost immediately, though, because the manager called me about 20 minutes after I got off the phone with them to apologize again and to tell me I don't have to call before bringing my service dog into the lobby. Um, yeah, I knew I didn't have to call first. I already told him that. But at least it seems corporate is on the case.

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