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Access Laws for Guide Dog Users: U.S.

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District of Columbia

Human Rights Act of 1977, Title 6, Chapter 22; Title 6, Chapter 17, Sections 6-1701 through 6-1709

District of Columbia law guarantees a blind person the legal right to be accompanied by a specially trained dog guide in its public buildings and its public facilities, and in all public accommodations and on all public conveyances. The right to equal accommodation in all housing also is guaranteed to a dog guide user. No additional charge can be levied because of the dog's presence, but the dog guide user is liable for any damage the dog may cause to the premises. Landlords are not required to modify the premises, nor are they responsible for maintaining a higher degree of care than that provided other tenants.

With the exception of the federal government, the District of Columbia prohibits all employers, including its own various branches, from employment discrimination because of blindness or visual impairment.

Public accommodations include hotels, restaurants, stores, places of resort and amusement, and all other places to which the general public is invited. (Sect. 6-1702, Sect. 6-2202, Sect. 6-2241)

Public conveyances include boats, trains, buses, streetcars, taxis, airplanes, and all other modes of transportation offered for public use. (Sect. 6-1702, Sect. 6-2241)

Housing includes all accommodations offered for rent, lease or compensation within the jurisdiction of the district. (Sect. 6-1706, Sect. 6-2231)

Violation: Any person, or agent thereof who denies or interferes with the above legally established rights is punishable with imprisonment up to 90 days, or a fine not to exceed $300, or both. (Sect. 6-1707)

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