Friday, January 29, 2016

Georgie Girl running down the street so fancy free :).

Oh my this dog, Georgie. I adore her! She has such a fun, sweet personality as well as an amazing guide dog. Each of my guide dogs has been such a blessing in my life and their personalities have been amazing for me in that time. This morning it was 14 miles on the marathon training plan. Georgie is used to seeing me get dressed up in running clothes and leave in the morning. She seems to understand she's not invited for this event. She greeted me with a bone that Steve said .. she is color coordinated! So so cute. We stopped in and got her for the last mile. She ran with my friend Suzette and Brenda guided me. She loved it and was little Georgie Girl running down the street so fancy free :). I feel so grateful for such great friends, a healthy body, and the joy of getting out and enjoying the morning.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Interview for Love is Blind

Today we were interviewed and will be on Fox 13 at 1 PM to share about an upcoming event: Love is Blind with the Utah Foundation for the Blind. It will be next Friday, February 5th. I have been invited to be one of the speakers and looking forward to a fun evening!

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Educating

Majority of the days for work Steve and I are able to coordinate transportation.  Probably once or twice a week our schedules don't fit and I call an Uber or a cab.  Majority of the time by far, I have had incredible   positive experiences with Uber. I love hearing the driver's stories of what led them to driving for Uber.  I've heard stories such as I donate all my earnings to the Food Bank.  I am earning money for my grandkids college, etc.  I told one Uber driver, Uber is almost like being able to drive.  Its super convenient and pretty economical, too.  

This past Tuesday, Steve was not in town and so I planned to call an Uber for a ride home after work.  I turned on the ap, requested a ride and finished up my work at the office.  After a few minutes the driver arrived.  As I walked out to get into his car, his window was rolled down and he called out no dogs allowed.  I could then hear the click of his door ! I said, This is my guide dog.  Assuming he must not be aware that Georgie is a service animal. He again said no dogs allowed in a more irritated tone.  I wasn't about to be turned away.  I also wanted to give him another chance..  I told him (surprisingly still very calm :) once again that she was a guide dog, explaining the law (Americans with Disabilities Act) and that indeed she was allowed in his car.  He became a little more angry and told me his company did not allow dogs in their cars.  I said yes they do and if he chose to deny me I would contact Uber to file a complaint..  He drove off.and charged my card for denying the ride! I walked back into my office frustrated yet calm.  This was an inconvenience yet grateful that I knew the response on the other end would be positive.  I emailed Uber Support to report this unfortunate situation.  

Meanwhile I was ready to go home.  I pulled up the Uber ap again and called for a new driver.  While I was waiting for him to arrive, I received a call from the Uber Support.  She was super apologetic and helpful.  She waived the charge he had assessed and told me he would be talked to and educated further.  She indicated it was a reminder that they still had work to be done on educating their drivers.  

The next driver was so nice and was so surprised to hear what had happened.  He said - how could he not know that we are trained on that as soon as we start!  

It took a little extra time to send the email and make the phone call.  And to be honest after a long day it was tempting to just think .. oh well.   However ...Through many experiences in advocacy, I've learned that assertive educating goes a long ways and follow-up is important and brings positive results.  I think the next time this driver picks up a guide dog team he'll be educated :).  

Your silence gives consent. -- Plato