New policy supports airline’s commitment to the health and safety of all customers, crewmembers, and service animals.
JetBlue (Nasdaq: JBLU) today announced new requirements for customers flying with emotional support and psychiatric service animals as part of its commitment to ensuring the safety of all customers and crewmembers traveling on JetBlue.
The updated policy requires customers to submit advanced notification and documentation when traveling with an emotional support or psychiatric service animal. The policy applies to anyone scheduled to travel on July 1, 2018 or later.
JetBlue’s policy for other non-psychiatric service animals which are trained to perform specific tasks to provide disability mitigation directly to traveling customers, remains unchanged.
The new requirements follow a dramatic increase in industry incidents involving emotional support animals that haven’t been adequately trained to behave in a busy airport or the confined space of an aircraft, which creates health and safety risks for customers, crewmembers and other service or support animals. JetBlue’s policies are consistent with recently announced guidelines from the Department of Transportation which regulates the transportation of service and support animals under the Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA).
“As always, we welcome the opportunity to support customers who require special assistance or accommodation while ensuring a safe environment for everyone onboard. This is not only a requirement, it’s simply the right thing to do,” said John Allen, vice president safety, JetBlue, “With these new policies, we’ve developed a thoughtful and collaborative approach to balance the needs of customers requiring assistance while responding to the extensive feedback we’ve received from customers and crewmembers concerned about their health and safety.”
Updated requirements for emotional support and psychiatric service animals
JetBlue accepts only dogs, cats, and miniature horses as emotional support or psychiatric service animals and limits such permitted animals to one (1) per customer. Customers flying on or after July 1, 2018, must notify JetBlue of their intent to travel with emotional support or psychiatric service animal on their flight and must download, complete, and submit the following three documents online at least 48 hours in advance.
Medical/Mental Health Professional Form – This document must be completed by the professional currently providing the Customer’s mental health care and who prescribes the emotional support or psychiatric service animal.
Veterinary Health Form – This document must be completed by a veterinarian detailing and attesting to the animal’s vaccination records and fitness to fly.
Confirmation of Animal Behavior Form – This document is a signed customer confirmation affirming the emotional support or psychiatric service animal is trained to behave appropriately in public and that the owner accepts all liability for any injuries or damage to property.
The required forms are available at https://www.jetblue.com/travel/special-assistance/service-animal/ along with additional detail on traveling with service or support animals.
The required documentation for Emotional Support/Psychiatric Service Animals must also accompany the animal when traveling and is to be presented upon request to JetBlue personnel for review. The behavior of the animal will be assessed at the airport to ensure all safety requirements are met before approving the animal for travel.