Veteran With PTSD Refused Service In A Local Restaurant Because Of His Service Dog

On Monday, Brandon Ruzbacki was refused service at a local restaurant because of his service dog. Ruzbaki is a military veteran suffering from PTSD and needs his dog by his side at all times. He stopped at Duff's Wings on Orchard Park Rd in Buffalo to grab a bite when the incident happened.

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According to Ruzbaki’s Facebook post, the manager Philip Kinecki refused to let him in, citing sanitation concerns and suggesting that the dog could hurt someone.

He told me he was not going to let me in here with my dog because he's a sanitation risk and what if he bites somebody.

The veteran told WIVB.com that he then handed the dog’s identification card that clearly stated he had a right to have the dog with him and also that the dog is not required to wear a service vest. However, the manager refused to let him in.

Military Vet, Service DogAfrica Studio / Shutterstock.com

Ruzbaki said he took his cards back, announced that he was a military vet who got refused service and left. About 6 people at the restaurant who were disappointed with the manager then left the restaurant.

Ruzbaki has a hard time staying calm when in the presence of many people and his trusty service dog Murphy makes him feel a lot better.

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U.S. Department of Justice rules for service animals according to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is very clear in their definition of service animals.

Service animals are defined as dogs that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities.

The law also says that service animals are allowed "to accompany people with disabilities in all areas of the facility where the public is normally allowed to go."

Military Vet, Service DogAfrica Studio / Shutterstock.com

Facility owners are only permitted to ask two questions, "(1) is the dog a service animal required because of a disability, and (2) what work or task has the dog been trained to perform." Philip Kinecki later claimed he had no idea what the rules were and apologized to Ruzbaki.

Several people who saw Ruzbaki’s post on Facebook expressed their displeasure at the restaurant manager and even promised not to patronize the restaurant.

Using ignorance of the law as an excuse to discriminate against people is not acceptable in any situation, even more so when there is an opportunity to learn something new. Perhaps if Philip Kinecki was more understanding, he would have avoided the fiasco his refusal caused.

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