Disabled woman refused entry into Primark because of her guide dog

A Primark worker refused to allow a disabled woman into a store because she had a guide dog with her.

Chloe Tear, 25, was shopping with her sister in Leeds city centre on Sunday when they decided to visit the budget clothing store.

But a staff member stopped the siblings, who had Chloe’s 19-month-old guide dog Dezzie with them, because ‘dogs are not allowed’.

The disability blogger said: ‘When I explained he was a guide dog, they still said no. I then explained the law and that it was illegal to refuse a guide dog as it was a public place.

‘We had to wait there while the member of staff radioed their manager. It took a few minutes to get a response, but luckily the manager said yes. We were then allowed into the shop.

‘The whole thing cannot have lasted more than a few minutes, but I was so shocked that it had happened, even emotional.

‘It was frustrating to have to explain multiple times that Dezzie was a guide dog.

‘I’m glad we were allowed in eventually, but if I wasn’t with my sister, I probably would have turned around and walked away as it was pretty intimidating.’

Chloe felt worse when her sister told her she had noticed the staff member who had initially refused them entry ‘following them around the shop’.

‘This made me feel so uncomfortable, like I had done something wrong,’ Chloe said.

Primark has since apologised to Chloe and made sure to add: ‘To clarify, guide dogs are, of course, always welcome in our stores.’

It is illegal for any service provider to deny entry to a disabled person because of any equipment they may need, and this includes guide dogs.

Chloe waited two years to get Dezzie and only finished training two weeks ago.

She said: ‘Dezzie has enabled me to be independent. Prior to getting a guide dog, the simple act of going into a shop would have been very tricky.

‘Dezzie has enabled me to go shopping independently and given me that freedom.’

Primark told ‘We want all of our stores to be accessible for everyone and we’re really sorry that a customer was wrongly denied access with their guide dog to our Leeds Trinity store.

‘We’re following up with our security provider to ensure this doesn’t happen again and are in contact with the customer to apologise for their experience.’

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