Turns out, when a town grows and Council wants to meet its residents' needs, policies need to change or in this case, created.
Niverville Town Council has never needed to address the issue of bringing Service Dogs inside public spaces in their town.
However, at their council meeting last week, a motion was put forward to create a Disabilities Policy.
Right now, if an individual with a disability needs to take their service dog into the Niverville Community Resource and Recreation Centre, they are allowed inside, though there is no policy in place.
Eric King, CAO for the town of Niverville says, “there have been requests for Service Animals to come into the building. And so now we need to create a set of rules that applies, not only to Service Animals but the needs of others with disabilities as well.”
Niverville Town Council will be creating a policy that best serves individuals with disabilities.
King notes, “it also opens up questions about people, for example, who have allergies, light and sound sensitivities, and so on. So, we’re trying to meander our way through all the possibilities and definitions.”
He says they are also working on defining what a service animal is and is not. “I have a dog at home and my dog is not trained to be a service animal, but what happens if I come into the Centre and say that I have a service animal? Those sorts of scenarios.”
King clarifies that “there has never been a need to allow service animals into the building. But with this policy in place, CRRC staff will have the ability to address each situation, (should it come up) and they will be allowed in here in the right circumstances.”