Louisiana Hotel Refuses Family’s Reservation Due To Epileptic Son’s Service Dog [Video]
A Best Western in Baton Rouge, Louisiana cancelled a family’s reservation when they found out that they would be bringing their epileptic son’s service dog along with them.
Beau Vaughan is a 13 year old old who has a rare form of epilepsy called Landau-Kleffner Syndrome. This form of epilepsy requires him to have a service dog named Chip with him at all times. Chip alerts the family when Beau is having a seizure.
When Beau’s mother Karen told the hotel that Chip was going to be with them, something she is not legally required to do, she received an email:
“We got an email saying due to unforeseen circumstances, they will not be able to honor our reservations,” she told WAFB. “Working through that they said, oh, you’re bringing a pet and Best Western isn’t pet friendly.”
The American Disabilities Act covers service animals. It also just so happens to be that Karen is an attorney focused on the rights of children with special needs.
A hotel employee told WAFB that while she understands the law, “workers can’t go against what the owner says.”
Best Western’s corporate office contacted Vaughan a week after the email, and wanted to honor her reservation. Rightfully so, she said it was too little, too late.
“I’ve already booked with another hotel that’s understanding and happy to follow the law,” she said. “I don’t want to go to a hotel where I have to force them to follow the law.”