On 29 June, 2021, Shenzhen passed the Barrier-free Facilities Regulation, which will take effect on 1 September, 2021.
The Regulation marks the first ‘Zero-Barrier Policy’ in China. It was set up based on international standards and relevant experiences in Shenzhen, a city that has become the pioneer of the concept of ‘Barrier-free City’ in China.
The Regulation has a provision dedicated to access areas for service dogs. It allows disabled people to bring along their service dogs to public facilities and transportation. Facilities that prohibit the entry of dogs now have to provide necessary assistance to disabled people and their service dogs.
The Disabled People’s Protection Law and relevant legislations at provincial levels have already allowed blind people to take public transportation with their guide dogs. In April, 2020, a police officer pretended to be blind and took the bus with a guide dog. Although he showed all certificates, the bus driver refused to let the dog aboard and even called the police. There are still many cities which refuse the entry of guide dogs to public areas, making it inconvenient for blind people.
Shenzhen has been the leading city in the country in terms of ‘barrier-free’ legislation and implementation. In 2009, Shenzhen passed the ‘barrier-free’ environment Law and became the first city to promote ‘barrier-free’ facilities. Now that the city passed the Barrier-free Facilities Regulation, it turns ‘barrier-free City’ into a new era.
Let’s look forward to the more loving Shenzhen!