TED Talk on Training Humans Around Service Dogs

Service dogs are increasingly visible in society, but do you know how to behave around one?
Jocelynn Johnson, is a Geospatial Analyst for the Government of Manitoba. She is a graduate of both Red River College and the University of Manitoba (BSc), and is currently pursuing a third degree.
While part of an average Winnipeg family, at age seven Jocelynn went from having perfect hearing to being completely deaf overnight from meningitis. She became the first child in Manitoba to receive a Cochlear Implant. In her twenties, she had to have it removed after a medical incident, effectively losing her hearing for a second time.
As a result, she has gone between existing in the hearing world, the deaf world, and the grey area in-between. Since receiving her Hearing Ear Service Dog nearly nine years ago, she has recognized a gap in education about service animals, and has strived to narrow this gap by educating formally or informally whenever possible.
Jocelynn is the co-chair and founder of the Civil Servants with Abilities Network and a founder of the Deaf Professionals Network. She is also President of the Manitoba GIS Users Group.
This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community

Minister Carla Qualtrough answers questions regarding Bill C81, the Accessible Canada Act

Here is a link to a video of a two hour standing committee meeting on Oct 2, 2018, where Minister Carla Qualtrough answered questions regarding Bill C81, the Accessible Canada Act.
The people asking questions are MP’s assigned to that committee from all political parties.
Many people in Canada, and elsewhere, are asking:
  • What is in this Bill?
  • What does it mean to people with disabilities in Canada?
  • What does it mean to people who use Guide and Service Dogs?
It is important to get either an understanding of this Bill, as it will impact everything we do going forward. For example, our latest submission to the Canadian Transportation Agency’s (CTA) proposed accessibility regulations was written through a disability lens based in Human Rights.
Some have said the CTA proposed regulations are a mixture of the charity/medical model and of the social model of disability, so some parts are very good and other parts are very regressive.
If Coalition members and supporters could find time to listen to this very good explanation of Bill C81 and give feedback regarding your thoughts and questions, it would be much appreciated. Information is power and as we know better we will do better. All of our voices are important and supporting each other to learn and grow our understandings of the processes now in play will benefit us all greatly.
Please feel free to share this very long link, provided in full here: http://parlvu.parl.gc.ca/XRender/en/PowerBrowser/PowerBrowserV2/20181002/-1/30088 Language=English&Stream=Video&useragent=Mozilla/5.0%20(Macintosh;%20Intel%20Mac%20OS%20X%2010_14)%20AppleWebKit/605.1.15%20(KHTML,%20like%20Gecko)%20Version/12.0%20Safari/605.1.15

Service Dog Refusal Ruins Vacation

A visually impaired woman missed out on a dream trip to Dublin with her friends after her service dog was denied boarding by WOW airlines.

An Introduction to Scott Streiner, Chair and CEO of the Canadian Transportation Agency

For those following the Coalition’s submission to the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA), the attached biography and recent speech by the CTA’s Chair and CEO, Scott Streiner may be of interest.

Finalized Coalition Submission to the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA), September 27, 2018

Here is the Coalition’s finalized submission to the CTA, provided to them on September 27, 2018.

As a reminder of what the Coalition is responding to, here is a summary of the CTA’s proposed regulations.

Another Attack On Guide and Service Dog Handlers – A Message From Yvonne Peters

Well, Canada’s federal government is once again mounting another attack on guide and service dog handlers.

Now the Canadian Transportation Agency is proposing that all guide and service dog handlers provide documentation and register with all federally regulated modes of transportation if they wish to travel.

They are requesting that an accredited professional service animal training institution certify that our dogs are indeed trained. No definition of what they mean by such an institution.

They also want a vet to provide a up-to-date vaccination record. Okay, maybe to some this sounds reasonable, but the CTA offers no rationale or explanation as to how this will improve passenger service.

I have traveled for about 40 years with my guide dog and never been asked for documentation. My speculation is that maybe people have been trying to pass their pets off as service dogs and causing problems once onboard. So why not go after those fakers? Why put the burden on persons with legitimate guide and service dogs? Such action is contrary to how are society normally addresses crime or wrongdoing.

Maybe we should level the playing field and ask other groups to also register and provide documentation of their ability to travel. For example, doctors could be asked to certify that passengers will not cough and sneeze on fellow passengers; social workers could certify that parents are trained to manage their children while in the air; and an addictions counsellor could certify that passengers are capable of drinking responsibly while flying.

This constant demand to prove legitimacy is getting so tiresome and an erosion of our rights. Traveling with a guide or service dog is not a luxury or life style. It is a human right confirmed by Canadian law.

Coalition’s submission to the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) re: proposed Airline Passenger Bill of Rights Regulation

Here is the Coalition’s submission to the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) regarding the proposed Airline Passenger Bill of Rights Regulation.
The submission was prepared by a working group consisting of Yvonne Peters, Susan L. Hardie, PhD, Anne Musgrave, Christine Switzer, Marcia Yale, and Heather Walkus.
 We have done our best to include most of the ideas that were submitted by Coalition members.
For those of you who may have read the consultation paper on the proposed regulation, you will note that our submission deals with a variety of issues that go beyond the scope of the consultation paper. This was a deliberate choice to ensure that the CTA understands that for guide and service dog handlers, passenger rights include all aspects of airline travel and that further meaningful consultation is needed.
This is the Coalition’s first submission to the government following our work on the CGSB. We had limited time and resources, so our submission may not be as comprehensive as it could be.
We felt, however, that it was important to make our organization and concerns known to government agencies dealing with disability-related policies/issues.