Mark McClenaghan had a very bad day last week, when he tried to board a Scotrail sleeper in Aberdeen with his service dog, Friday. Apparently Friday was barred from boarding because he might have “fleas, germs or mites.”
So Mark had to find another way to get back to Edinburgh, and in the end he had to fork over an additional ?95 for a taxi. Ouch!
So what went wrong? Well according to Scotrail, they welcome service animals on all their trains and they have clear guidelines for their staff about this policy.
Apparently the Scotrail employee that barred Mark from the rail car didn’t see those guidelines. She claimed that if she let Friday aboard then they would have to deep clean the train afterwards.
And when Mark spoke to her supervisor, he backed up his employee. After all, he trained her.
In the end Mark did everything he could, but they still wouldn’t budge.
Scotrail is looking into the matter, so hopefully Mark will be compensated. Personally I put the blame on the supervisor. He’s in charge of training his employees and for making them familiar with all Scotrail regulations. It’s quite obvious that he was unfamiliar with the access laws and issues, and apparently he passed along that ignorance to at least one of his employees.
So it just goes to prove that you can have the best access laws in the world, but if you don’t train employees and educate them about those laws, access goes to Hell in a hand basket rather quickly.
Hopefully Scotrail will move just as quickly to rectify their training problem at the Aberdeen station.