A diabetic boy and his family were thrown out of Smashburger for bringing in their service dog and told to “eat outside” by the manager.
Megan Moon and her family recently stopped by a Smashburger in Las Vegas with their service dog, Medic, who helps Moon’s 9-year-old diabetic son. According to KTNV, the dog is trained to react when the boy’s blood sugar is off balance.
But when the manager saw Medic snoozing in the restaurant, she allegedly told Moon, “I see you have a dog, he’s not allowed to be in our store. We don’t allow pets. You’re going to have to eat outside.”
Moon says the manager trivialized the matter, saying, “I’m not allowing it to happen. Let’s just not make a big deal out of it.” However, Moon replied, “I am going to make a big deal about it.”
The manager allegedly canceled the family’s food order and cast them out. “We were embarrassed,” Moon told KTNV. “There were other people in the restaurant looking at us like we were causing a scene...like we had done something wrong.”
According to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), service dogs have been specifically trained to “work” for people with medical conditions. They can travel mostly anywhere in public, even in hospital rooms. The animals must be held on leashes, unless the restraints interfere with their functions. And the purpose of the dog is generally nobody’s business, with employees limited to asking two questions: Is the dog a service animal required because of a disability? What work or task has the dog been trained to perform?
Smashburger sent a statement to Yahoo Lifestyle: “First and foremost, Smashburger respects and welcomes guests of all abilities. Smashburger supports and adheres to the applicable ADA guidelines involving service and support animals, as they pertain to quick service restaurants. We have launched an internal investigation into the matter, and will use this opportunity to reinforce our policies around service animals.”
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