UK: Muslim drivers refuse to let guide dogs on board

UK: Muslim drivers refuse to let guide dogs on board

Via Daily Mail:

Blind passengers are being ordered off buses or refused taxi rides because Muslim drivers or passengers object to their 'unclean' guide dogs.

One pensioner, a cancer sufferer, told how had twice been confronted by drivers and asked to get off the bus because of his guide dog, and had also faced hostility at a hospital and in a supermarket over the animal.

The problem to carry guide dogs on religious grounds has become so widespread that the matter was raised in the House of Lords last week, prompting transport minister Norman Baker to warn that a religious objection was not a reason to eject a passenger with a well-behaved guide dog.

This article was prepared by the Islam in Europe blog -

While drivers can use their discretion to refuse to carry non-disabled passengers with dogs, they are compelled to accept guide dogs under disability discrimination law.

Yesterday both the Guide Dogs for the Blind Association and the National Federation of the Blind confirmed the problem was common, and, according to the latter organisation was 'getting worse'.

The tension stems from a strand of Islamic teaching which warns against contact with dogs because the animal's saliva was considered to be impure, the Muslim Council of Britain said.

It urged Muslims to show tolerance and common sense over the issue.

'We need to be flexible on this,' a spokesman said. 'Muslim drivers should have no hesitation in allowing guide dogs into their bus or car.

'If a dog does lick you, it's not the end of the world. Just go home and wash yourself.'


No comments: