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Veteran Says United Airlines Mistreated PTSD Service Dog (Video)


Jim Stanek Alleges Mistreatment

Iraq War veteran Jim Stanek claims United Airlines employees mistreated him and his service dog during a layover at Dulles International Airport near Washington, D.C. earlier this month, according to a video made by Stanek and posted on YouTube.

Stanek, who suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), is the co-founder of Paws and Stripes, a non-profit organization that helps match veterans who've been diagnosed with PTSD and/or TBI with service dogs.

Stanek says in his video that two different United Airlines employees kicked his service dog Sarge, and a customer service representative later asked if Stanek was "retarded."

A spokesperson for United told Reduced Mobility Rights reporter Roberto Castiglioni:

"We are reaching out to the customer directly to discuss the events that he described."

Paws and Stripes co-founder Lindsey Stanek confirmed this with Reduced Mobility Rights, saying:

"United Airlines has contacted us, asking what happened and informing us that they have 30 days to look into it."

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Avatar for user 'skindred'

skindred | July 25, 2012 at 7:07 a.m. ― 4 years, 8 months ago

There is a petition on to encourage United Airlines to acknowledge the incident, issue a public policy and agree to mandate changes to their staffing and training protocols to include sensitivity and cultural diversity training along with training about the role of service dogs for people with invisible disabilities. You can join the conversation and sign the petition here:

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Avatar for user 'AlkiDweller'

AlkiDweller | July 26, 2012 at 1:55 p.m. ― 4 years, 8 months ago

If you change the words "two different United Airlines employees kicked his service dog" to "two different United Airline employees on two consecutive days kicked his rather large German Shepherd", it starts taking on a different meaning. Do you know of anyone that would kick a Pit Bull? A Doberman? A Rottweiler? Until someone can ferret out a witness, I'll hold off signing some petition. One guy's story with a web cam, and not one witness, does not make a truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

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