Straits Times Forum, 20 February 2013 (print edition)
WE ARE concerned that Mr Kua Cheng Hock and his guide dog were not allowed to board a Tiger Airways flight last December (“Tiger rejects request to bring guide dog on flight”; Monday).
It is unclear from Tiger’s statement what the reasoning is behind its policy on guide dogs.
Why does Tiger allow properly accredited and trained guide dogs on only its domestic flights within Australia, and not on its international flights?
And why does it not follow the example of other Singapore-based carriers, such as Singapore Airlines, which permit guide dogs on their international flights.
We urge Tiger to ensure that its policies are as inclusive as possible, and that it takes into account the right of persons with visual impairments to travel independently, which is one of the main purposes of having a guide dog.
This is especially important now that Singapore has signed the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which guarantees all those with disabilities in Singapore, including those who have visual impairments and are assisted by guide dogs, freedom of movement and the right to live independently.
Allowing guide dogs on international flights to assist people like Mr Kua would contribute to the fulfilment of the convention in Singapore.
Marissa Lee Medjeral (Dr)
Disabled People’s Association