The Department for Infrastructure has reminded taxi drivers of the legal requirement to carry assistance dogs when required by passengers with disabilities.
It is currently an offence under Section 37 of the Disability Discrimination Act for a taxi driver to refuse to carry an assistance dog or to make any additional charges for doing so, unless they display an exemption certificate.
Taxi drivers with a genuine medical reason for not carrying assistance dogs must apply to the Department for an exemption certificate and display it on the taxi. Taxi drivers who are successfully prosecuted for failing to adhere to the requirements of the legislation face a fine of up to £1,000.
The Department is working closely with Guide Dogs NI to ensure that people who use assistance dogs are fully aware of their rights so that action can be taken if breaches occur.