ACT Canine Support Program | Guide Dogs NSW/ACT

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ACT Canine Support Program

Guide Dogs NSW/ACT is excited to be involved in a pilot of a canine support program in the ACT Magistrates Court.

Modeled on the similar program in the NSW Local Court, the pilot will involve one of our Therapy Dogs named Quota, visiting the Magistrates Court with his handler for a few hours each week to engage with parties, witnesses and other people involved in court proceedings. The pilot began in February 2019 and will primarily focus on the Childrens Court and the remote witness suites

The ACT Chief Magistrate said: 
“We are very pleased to partner with Guide Dogs NSW/ACT to offer this program in the ACT. The program will give court users the opportunity to engage with Therapy Dogs which can help reduce the anxiety that often accompanies court proceedings. Arrangements are in place to ensure that people who are afraid of or allergic to dogs, or who are concerned about contact with them, are not affected.”

The pilot will run for six months and, if successful, may become a permanent service for court users.