Access to TfL vehicles for passengers with "assistance dog"

Captain Bryn Wayt made this Freedom of Information request to Transport for London

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was successful.

Captain Bryn Wayt

Dear Transport for London,

My FoI Act 2000 question is to do with access to your transport
vehicles (all types) for passengers with their "assistance dog" and your
cultural/religious policy in that respect.

There is an email going round the UK which allegedly indicates that
Muslims do not allow dogs on "their" transport, e.g. the London bus
they drive. It may help if I quote an excerpt:
"In London, a bus driver prevented a woman from boarding a bus with
her dog because there was a Muslim lady on the bus who "might be
upset by the dog." As the woman attempted to complain, the doors
closed and the bus drove away. When a second bus arrived, she again
tried to embark, but was stopped again, this time because the
driver said he was Muslim."

Q1. Has London transport ever received a complaint of that nature
as outlined above?

Q2. Is there any law prohibiting anybody with a "guide" dog or
"assistance dog" from alighting on your public transport (any
kind).

Q3. Does your 'diversity training' course touch on the subject of
Muslims and "assistance dogs"?

Yours faithfully,

Captain Bryn Wayt

FOI, Transport for London

 
 
Dear Captain Wayt
 
TfL Ref: FOI-1574-1112
 
Thank you for your email received by Transport for London (TfL) on 6
February 2012 asking for information about TfL’s policy for passengers
with assistance dogs.
 
Your request will be processed in accordance with the requirements of the
Freedom of Information Act and TfL’s information access policy. 
 
A response will be provided to you by 5 March.
 
In the meantime, if you would like to discuss this matter further, please
do not hesitate to contact me.
 
Yours sincerely
 
Lee Hill
FOI Case Officer
 
FOI Case Management Team
General Counsel
Transport for London
 
 
 
 

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Captain Bryn Wayt

Dear Lee,

Thank you for your rapid and encouraging reply, which I look forward to.

Kind wishes.

Yours sincerely,

Captain Bryn Wayt

FOI, Transport for London

2 Attachments

Dear Mr Wayt

 

TfL Ref: FOI-1574-1112

 

Thank you for your email received by Transport for London (TfL) on 6
February 2012 asking for information about TfL policy regarding assistance
dogs on buses.

 

Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of
the Freedom of Information Act and TfL’s information access policy. I can
confirm TfL does hold the information you require. You asked for:

 

There is an email going round the UK which allegedly indicates that
Muslims do not allow dogs on "their" transport, e.g. the London bus they
drive. It may help if I quote an excerpt: "In London, a bus driver
prevented a woman from boarding a bus with her dog because there was a
Muslim lady on the bus who "might be upset by the dog." As the woman
attempted to complain, the doors closed and the bus drove away. When a
second bus arrived, she again tried to embark, but was stopped again, this
time because the driver said he was Muslim."

    

1. Has London transport ever received a complaint of that nature as
outlined above?

 

We have received complaints in the past about drivers not allowing dogs on
to their vehicles for a number of reasons, including alleged Muslim
drivers not allowing dogs on. However, these types of complaints are not
recorded specifically by that reason but generally under driver behaviour.
Therefore, it isn’t possible to verify whether the specific complaint you
mention is genuine or a malicious circular email without going through and
checking each and every complaint logged under ‘driver behaviour’. If you
would like us to check for this you would need to provide us with exact
details of the complaint, including time period, as it is likely that
manually searching through all ‘driver behaviour’ complaints looking for
one broadly explained complaint would exceed the cost limit without a more
detailed description.

    

2. Is there any law prohibiting anybody with a "guide" dog or "assistance
dog" from alighting on your public transport (any kind).

 

3. Does your 'diversity training' course touch on the subject of Muslims
and "assistance dogs"?

 

Drivers and staff are given clear guidance about the role of assistance
dogs and they understand these ‘working’ dogs should not be refused travel
on London’s buses, or any other mode of transport.   Our position in
respect of carrying dogs on London’s buses is clear and laid out on pages
22 - 23 of the current Big Red Book which is issued as guidance and
information to all drivers of TfL bus services. I have attached a copy of
this for your reference.

 

Page 23 of the handbook states that other dogs and inoffensive animals are
allowed to travel on London buses so long as they are on a lead and under
control.  However, a driver can refuse to carry a dog if they believe it
is dangerous – and the illustrations help to clarify this.

 

If this is not the information you are looking for, or if you are unable
to access it for some reason, please do not hesitate to contact me.

 

Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to
appeal as well as information on copyright and what to do if you would
like to re-use any of the information we have disclosed.

 

Yours sincerely

 

Lee Hill

FOI Case Officer

 

FOI Case Management Team

General Counsel

Transport for London

 

 

 

 

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Captain Bryn Wayt

Dear Lee Hill,

Thank you for your very informative response - I would like you to know it is exactly what I would have wished for, and I must congratulate you on being so thorough and helpful.

Well done Sir.

Yours sincerely,

Captain Bryn Wayt