The month of October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month. In support of this, Metrolink partnered with Guide Dogs of America to bring guide dogs in training to L.A. Union Station for cute cuddles and to educate Metrolink riders. Staff from Guide Dogs of America facilitated the interactions between riders and the dogs while also educating them on interacting with the blind community and guide dog etiquette.
Guide Dog Tips:
- Do not distract a guide dog—it is doing its job to keep its partner safe
- Always ask before petting a guide dog
- Do not offer treats or food to a guide dog
Interacting with the Blind Tips:
- Speak directly to the person in a normal tone of voice
- Identify yourself when entering and leaving a room and address the person by name
- Ask before assisting the person (don’t grab them or the harness handle)
- Give useful and elaborate directions—the more thorough, the better
National Disability Employment Awareness Month celebrates the contributions of workers with disabilities. Metrolink is a fully inclusive employer and Metrolink’s train system is ADA compliant. Partnering with Guide Dogs of America was the perfect match as their mission is to empower people who are blind or visually impaired with increased independence, confidence and mobility by providing expertly matched guide dog partners. The ability to take public transportation is a primary example of such independence.