I am a fifty year old diabetic grandmother who lives with PTSD, a major anxiety and depressive disorder and an immune condition called Sarcoidosis. I am partnered with Button, a 6 pound service dog, who is trained to distract me from my severe panic attacks. The dog wears both a collar tag and an identifying vest, is freshly groomed on a weekly basis, and never touches the floor, table, or a chair. She sits on my purse in the chair to my left.. I have (and carry) documentation from my psychiatrist confirming my need for and use of the service dog.
This morning, Wednesday May 9th, my family and I attempted to eat at the Cafe.
After being seated and offered menus, I was questioned by a waitress as to the nature of my disability, and what my dog does. Subsequently, a manager named Lisa, informed me that my service dog and I were not welcome in the cafe.
I pointed out that it is illegal to question what my disability is and it is illegal to refuse service to a customer with a service dog. I was told that I d have to talk to the owner, a Ms. Victoria Coca, who was not on site. At my urging, Lisa called Ms. Coca who confirmed that I was not permitted to eat in the cafe, and further informed Lisa to inform me that I could sit outside “in the garden” with the dog.
I informed the manager that because of my Sarcoidosis I can not just “sit outside.” When I attempted, again, to educate the manager as to the illegalities of the situation, I was informed that my choice was to sit outside, or leave.
As a result of this confrontation, I did, in fact, have a major panic attack. At that juncture, my family decided that we needed to head straight home. By the time we had driven the hour home, I then proceeded to have a diabetic event.
I am beyond angry and disappointed. I have been unnecessarily pushed into both a panic attack and a diabetic event.