Women Refused Service Due to Service Dog at Local Restaurant
Patricia McKinley was trying to have a nice meal at a northeast El Paso restaurant, when she was asked to leave. It wasn't due to any attitude, it was due to her service dog, Sugarpop. Sugarpop is McKinley's service dog, who is there by her side, to detect when her sugar levels are low.
Back in June, McKinley was refused service at the northeast restaurant, The Clock. The reasoning behind the refusal is due to her having a dog in the establishment, McKinely told ABC7, "They were like no we don't want to serve you and I'm like why? Because you have your dog with you. I know he's a dog, but he's also a medical device. I don't care what he is. He's a service animal. I don't care what he is, we're not serving you,"
According to Americans with Disability Act, owners are allowed to bring their dog, wherever they are needed. El Paso Police and Animal Control, beg to differ.
McKinley's sister capture the confrontation on film. The unidentified officers explain to McKinley, that any place can refuse her service,"The same thing for grocery stores. The grocery manager is in charge of the store. When you walk in with your pet, it's his discretion it's not a pet, it's a medical device. Pet medical device, it's a pet."
The Clock owner, Fernando Hernandez didn't want to be on camera with ABC7, but did give them a comment about dealing with McKinley before. Hernandez said wasn't the first time he has refused service to her, due to issues at the restaurant. He continued to say that the dog was not out of order, he just wanted to refuse service to her.
Which he has every right to do so, according to Julio Perez, ADA Coordinator for the City of El Paso, "ADA laws are not enforced by city entities, which is why it's hard to enforce the laws. He says at the end of the day it's up to businesses to know the law."
McKinley has filed a police report for the incident, especially after officers cited the woman for not having the appropriate vaccination and registration tags on the dog at the time. This citation was later dismissed.