March 17 2014 Latest news:
Lizzie Dearden, Senior reporter
Wednesday, February 12, 2014
A partially-sighted man has been turned out of a supermarket with his guide dog for a fourth time, despite having given staff awareness training himself.
Gary Mazin, 40, was told to leave his dog Gibson outside at Sainsbury’s Local in Gants Hill last week, even though the store’s own policies allow guide dogs.
He was invited by managers to talk to staff last year after being stopped three times for the same reason.
Sainsbury’s said it had re-trained workers on access policies, apologised to Mr Mazin and donated money to charity after the incident in August.
The father-of-two, from Clayhall, said he was “incredulous” that staff had made the same blunder again.
“Last time I was a bit upside but this time I was really angry,” he added.
“It’s a joke really.”
Mr Mazin said his guide dog’s high-visibility harness is clear from “10 feet away” so people know he is not a pet.
A Sainsbury’s spokesman said the shop “got it wrong” and training is being improved through work with charities.
He added: “The fact that it wasn’t the first time means we’re taking extra care to ensure lessons are learned.”
The 2004 Disability Discrimination Act requires shops, restaurants and hotels to make “reasonable adjustments” to allow access for people with mobility difficulties.