[Nfbnet-members-list] Urgent National Town Hall Meeting concerning Service Animals in Air Travel
Marion Gwizdala, President
president at nagdu.org
Mon Jan 27 02:51:09 UTC 2020
Please circulate the following message as widely as appropriate.
On January 22, the United States
Department of Transportation released a
long-awaited notice of proposed rule making
(NPRM) concerning the carriage of service animals
in the aircraft cabin. The entire text of the
NPRM is posted below the meeting instructions. As
a division of the National Federation of the
Blind and the most dynamic, influential voice in
the affairs of the nations guide dog users, the
National Association of Guide Dog Users (NAGDU)
will write the official comments for the National Federation of the Blind.
On Sunday, January 26 at 8:00
p.m. Eastern (7:00 p.m.; Central; 6:00 p.m.
Mountain; & 5:00 p.m. Pacific) the National
Association of Guide Dog Users will host a Town
Hall meeting during our board of directors
meeting to solicit comments from other guide dog
users concerning the proposed changes in the
implementing regulations of the Air Carrier
Access Act. In order to better advocate for you
as a representative, collective voice, we need to
receive input from you. Whether you are a member
or not, what we say could shape the way you
travel by air for years to come! You need not be
a member to join the meeting and offer your comments.
Although traditional conference call dialing is
available, we recommend using the free Zoom app
for the best audio quality and functionality. The
app is easy to use and is available on iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows, and Mac.
If you don't already have the app installed, you
will be prompted to do so when activating the
below Zoom link. Installing the app ahead of time
will give you the opportunity to customize it to your preference.
JOINING NAGDU MEETINGS
There are now three ways to join NAGDU meetings:
From any computer or Smart device, activate the
following link and follow the instructions:
You will need a microphone on your computer in
order to have your voice heard in the cloud!
2. Tap one of these links from any smart phone:
You can also add one of these numbers to your
contacts list so you can use them for future meetings!
3. Manually call by dialing either (669) 900-6833
or (408) 638-0968, then entering the ID 8136262789.
The following are a few commands which can be
used during the meeting based on how you joined.
1. Telephone: *6 to mute or unmute. *9 to raise your hand.
2. Windows: ALT+A to mute or unmute. ALT+Y to raise your hand.
3. Mac: CMD+SHIFT+A to mute or unmute. OPTION+Y to raise your hand.
4. Activate this link for a full list of commands
from either Windows or Mac:
CFR Part 382
Air Carriers, Civil rights, Consumer protection,
Individuals with Disabilities, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements
For the reasons set forth in the preamble, the
Department of Transportation proposes to amend 14
CFR part 382 to read as follows:
PART 382 NONDISCRIMINATION ON THE BASIS OF
DISABILITY IN AIR 1. The authority citation for
part 382 continues to read as follows:
Authority: 49 U.S.C. §§ 41702, 41705, 41712, and 41310.
2. section 382.3 1s amended by adding a
definition of a service animal in alphabetical
order: § 382.3 What do the terms in this rule mean?
Service animal means a dog that is individually
trained to do work or perform tasks for the
benefit of a qualified individual with a
disability, including a physical, sensory,
psychiatric, intellectual, or other mental
disability. Emotional support animals, comfort
animals, companionship animals, and service
animals in training are not service animals for the purposes
of this Part.
A Service Animal Handler 1s a qualified
individual with a disability who receives
assistance from a service animal(s) that does
work or performs tasks that are directly related
to the individuals disability, or a safety
assistant, as described in section 382.29(b), who
accompanies an individual with a disability traveling with a service animal(s).
The service animal handler is responsible for
keeping the animal under control at all times,
and caring for and supervising the service
animal, which includes toileting and feeding.
3. Section 382.28 1s added to read as follows:
§ 382.28 What assistance must carriers provide to
passengers with a disability required to check-in
before the check-in time for the general public?
If you require a passenger with a disability to
check-in in advance of the check-in time for the
general public, you must make personnel or other
employees trained to proficiency on the
requirements of this Part available promptly to
assist the passenger at a designated location 1n the airport.
4. Section 382.27 1s amended to remove (c)(8) and remove (c)(9).
5. Subpart EE 1s added to read as follows:
Subpart EEService Animals
§ 382.72 Must carriers allow a service animal to
accompany a passenger with a disability? You must
allow a service animal to accompany a passenger
with a disability. You must not deny
transportation to a service animal on the basis
that its carriage may offend or annoy carrier
personnel or persons traveling on the aircraft.
§ 382.73 How many service animals must a carrier
transport in the cabin of aircraft?
You are not required to accept more than two
service animals for a single passenger with a disability.
§ 382.74 How do carriers determine if an animal Is a service animal?
(a) You may make two inquiries to determine
whether an animal qualifies as a service animal.
You may ask if the animal is required to
accompany the passenger because of a disability
and what work or task the animal has been trained to perform.
You must not ask about the nature or extent of a
persons disability or ask that the service
animal demonstrate 1ts work or task.
(b) You may observe the behavior of an animal.
A trained service animal will remain under the control of its handler.
It does not run freely around an aircraft or an
airport gate area, bark or etrowl repeatedly at
other persons or other animals on the aircraft or
1n the airport gate area, bite, jump on, or cause
injury to people, or urinate or defecate in the
cabin or gate area. An animal that engages 1n
such disruptive behavior demonstrates that it has
not been successfully trained to behave properly
in a public setting and carriers are not required
to treat it as a service animal, even if the
animal performs an assistive function for a passenger with a disability.
(c) You may look for physical indicators on the
animal to determine if the animal is a service
animal. A service animal must be under the contro! of its owner.
harness, leash, or other tether unless the owner
1s unable because of a disability to use a
harness, leash, or other tether, or the use of a
harness, leash, or other tether would interfere
with the service animals safe, effective
performance of work or tasks, 1n which case the
service animal must be otherwise under the
handlers control (e.g., voice control, signals, or other effective means).
§ 382.75 May a carrier require documentation from
passengers with disabilities seeking to
travel with a service animal?
A service animal must have a
(a) If a passenger seeks to travel with a service
animal, you may require the passenger with a
disability to provide you, as a condition of
permitting the service animal to travel in the
cabin: (1) A current (1.e., no older than one
year from the date of the passengers scheduled
initial flight) completed copy of the U.S.
Department of Transportation Air Transportation Service Animal Health Form; and
A completed copy of the U.S. Department of
Transportation Air Transportation Service Animal
Behavior and Training Attestation Form.
(b) On a flight segment scheduled to take 8 hours
or more, you may, as a condition of permitting a
service animal to travel in the cabin, require
the passenger with a disability traveling with
the service animal to confirm that the animal
will not need to relieve itself on the flight or
that the animal can relieve itself in a way that
does not create a health or sanitation issue on
the flight by providing a DOT Service Animal Relief Attestation Form.
(c) You are not permitted to require
documentation of passengers with disabilities
traveling with service animals beyond completion
of the forms identified 1n paragraphs (a) and (b)
of this (d) You must keep copies of the forms
identified 1n paragraphs (a) and (b) at each airport you SCIVE.
As a foreign carrier, you must keep copies of the
forms at each airport serving a flight you
operate that begins or ends at a U.S. airport.
(ec) If you have a website, you must make the
blank forms identified 1n paragraphs (a) and (b)
available to passengers on your website in an accessible format.
You must mail copies of the blank forms identified 1n paragraphs (a) and (b) to
passengers upon request.
§ 382.76 May a carrier require a service animal
user to check-in at the airport one hour before
the check-in time at the airport for the general
public as a condition of travel to allow time to
process the service animal documentation?
You may require a passenger with a disability to
check-in at the airport one hour before the
check-in time at the airport for the general
public as a condition of travel with a service
animal to allow time to process the service
animal documentation and observe the animal so long as:
(1) You designate a specific location at the
airport where the passenger could be promptly
checked-in, the passengers service animal would
be observed, and the passengers service animal
documentation would be promptly reviewed by
personnel trained to proficiency on the service
animal requirements of this Part; and
(2) You have a similar or more stringent check-in
requirement for passengers traveling with their pets in the cabin.
If a passenger does not meet the check-in
requirements you establish consistent with this
section, you must still provide the accommodation
if you can do so by making reasonable efforts, without delaying the flight.
§ 382.77 May carriers restrict the location and
placement of service animals on aircraft? (a) You
must permit a service animal to accompany a
passenger with a disability on the passengers
lap or in the foot space immediately 1n front of
the passengers seat, unless this location and
placement would be (1) inconsistent with safety
requirements set by the FAA or the foreign
carriers government; or (2) encroaches into another passengers space.
(b) If a service animal cannot be accommodated on
the passengers lap or in the foot space
immediately in front of the passengers seat
without encroaching into another passengers space,
you must offer the passenger the opportunity to
move with the animal to another seat location
within the same class of service, 1f available on
the aircraft, where the animal can be accommodated.
You are not required to reseat other passengers
to accommodate a service animal except as required by Subpart F.
(c) If there are no alternatives available to
enable the passenger to travel with the service
animal in the cabin of the scheduled flight, you
must offer the passenger the opportunity to
transport the service animal in the cargo hold
free of charge or travel on a later flight to the
extent there 1s space available on a later flight
and the transport 1s consistent with the safety
requirements set by the FAA or a foreign carriers government.
§ 382.78 May carriers charge individuals with
disabilities for the damage thelr service While
you cannot charge an individual with a disability
for transporting service animals, or for
providing other services that this rule requires,
you may charge a passenger with a disability for
damage caused by his or her service animal so
long as you normally charge individuals without
disabilities for similar kinds of damage.
§ 382.79 Under what other circumstances may
carriers refuse to provide transportation to a
service animal traveling with a passenger with a disability?
(a) You may deny transport to a service animal
under the following circumstances: (1) The animal
poses a direct threat to the health or safety of
others (see definition in § 382.3);
(2) The animal causes a significant disruption in
the cabin or at an airport gate area, or its
behavior on the aircraft or at an airport gate
area indicates that it has not been trained to
behave properly in public (e.g., running freely,
barking or growling repeatedly at other
persons on the aircraft, biting or jumping on
people, or urinating or defecating 1n the cabin or gate area); or
(3) The animals carriage would violate FAA
safety requirements or applicable safety
requirements of a U.S. territory or foreign
government (e.g., the animal 1s too large or
heavy to be accommodated in the cabin).
(b) In determining whether to deny transport to a
service animal on the basis that the animal poses
a direct threat under paragraph (a)(1), you must
make an individualized assessment based on
reasonable judgment that relies on the best
available objective evidence to ascertain the
nature, duration, and severity of the risk; the
probability that the potential injury will
actually occur; and whether reasonable
modifications of policies, practices, or
procedure will mitigate (c) In determining
whether to deny transport to a service animal on
the basis that the animal has misbehaved and/or
has caused a significant disruption in the cabin
under paragraph (a)(2), you must make an
individualized assessment based on reasonable
judgment that relies on the best available
objective evidence to ascertain the probability
that the misbehavior and/or disruption will
continue to occur; and whether reasonable
modifications of policies, practices, or
procedure will mitigate the misbehavior and/or the disruption.
(d) In conducting the analysis required under
paragraph (a)(1) and (a)(2), you must not deny
transportation to the service animal if there are
means available short of refusal that would
mitigate the problem (e.g., muzzling a barking
service dog or taking other steps to comply with
animal health regulations needed to permit entry
of the service animal into a domestic territory or a foreign country).
(ec) If you refuse to provide transportation to a
service animal based on any provision in this
Part, you must provide the individual with a
disability accompanied by the service animal a
written statement of the reason for the refusal.
This statement must include the specific basis
for the carriers opinion that the refusal meets
the standards of paragraphs (a) through (c) of
this section or 1s otherwise specifically
permitted by this Part. You must provide this
written statement to the individual with a
disability accompanied by the service animal
either at the airport, or within 10 calendar days
of the refusal of transportation.
§ 382.80 May carriers impose additional
restrictions on the transport of service animals?
Carriers are not permitted to establish
additional restrictions on the transport of
service animals outside of those specifically
permitted by the provisions in this Part, unless
required by applicable FAA, TSA, or other Federal
requirements or a foreign carriers government.
6. Section 382.117 1s removed.
Issued this 22°° day of January, 2020, in Washington, D.C.
Elaine L. Chao, secretary.
Marion Gwizdala, President
National Association of Guide Dog Users Inc. (NAGDU)
National Federation of the Blind
President at NAGDU.ORG
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