Blind Woman in Miami Saddened After Being Denied Uber Ride with Her Service Dog

Robbie Carson-Esper, from Aventura, Florida, booked a ride with Uber Pets and was denied transportation by the driver because Carson-Esper was accompanied by her service dog. Carson-Esper, who is legally blind and uses hearing aids, shared a video to her Facebook page about how the driver reacted to her and her service/guide dog, a Black Labrador named Ted.

Not only is this entire situation disgraceful, it's also a fact that ride share services like Uber can’t deny service to riders with service animals. Just check out how horrible this driver acts.

According to the Americans With Disabilities Act, businesses and non-profits that are open to the public as well as state/local governments must allow service animals to go most places where the public can go. This is true even if they have a “no pets” policy. This is true for ride share services and public transportation.

Speaking to, Carson-Esper said, "She went ballistic on me and she said she was going to call the police. It makes me feel like a second-class citizen.”

Related: Guide Dog Getting Denied Public Access Is Absolutely Heartbreaking

It should be noted that the ADA does state that a business or state/local government can ask someone to remove their service animal if the dog is not housebroken or the dog is out of control, and the person cannot get the dog under control. Judging from the video Carson-Esper posted to Facebook, Ted looks like a beautifully behaved dog plus there is no proof he isn't housebroken.

Local 10 received this statement from Uber, "In a statement, an Uber spokesperson said, “What this rider experienced is incredibly frustrating. All drivers agree to transport service animals when signing up on the Uber app, and we have a dedicated team that investigates service animal-related reports. We have investigated this case and taken appropriate action.”

Carson-Esper posted this update to Facebook.

It's just horrible that Carson-Esper and Ted were treated this way. Places and services need to do better!

How To Interact With a Guide Dog

In the simplest terms possible, you shouldn't. Guide and service dogs aren't there for you to pet or talk to or interact with, but if you feel like you absolutely must, here are a few simple guidelines.

Before petting a guide or service dog, you should always ask their owner or handler. Even if you see a guide dog not wearing their service harness, you should always ask for permission before interacting with the dog, so that the handler can maintain control.

Always give guide and service dogs the right of way. Practice good etiquette by moving to the side and allowing the handler and dog to pass. Never attempt to grab or steer the person while the dog is guiding or attempt to hold the dog's harness. You should ask if the handler needs your assistance and, if so, offer your left arm.

Never feed a guide or service dog without their owner's permission.

Speak to the handler, not the dog, and never give their service dog commands.

Under the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), people with disabilities are allowed to be accompanied by their guide or service dog in all places the public is permitted. Here's hoping more businesses start to remember that.

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