Restaurant fined for refusing guide dog

Feb. 26, 2008 at 4:07 PM

MONTREAL, Feb. 26 (UPI) -- Quebec's Human Rights Commission Tuesday ordered a Montreal pizzeria to pay $4,000 to a quadriplegic man refused service because of his guide dog.

The commission ordered the Pizzeria Napoli to pay wheelchair-bound Michel Larochelle damages for the incident in July 2005, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reported.

The commission heard the 49-year-old Larochelle went into the restaurant with his guide dog Strass and a friend, and a waiter told them they couldn't sit in his section because he was allergic to dogs.

The waiter testified he didn't ask them to leave, but rather sit outside, the report said.

The commission ruled the waiter's suggestion was made with "so little conviction that it is equivalent to an absence of offer of reasonable accommodation," the CBC said.

The damages were divided as $3,000 in moral damages and $1,000 in punitive damages, the commission ruled.

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