Service Animals, Emotional Support, and Guide Dogs8908018
Sadly, some people are asking whether "service animal" laws are now being abused by those that want to scam the device.
There have been news stories, articles, opinion pieces along with other editorials where people rant and complain about people they think to be abusing the system. You hear some complain that they had to sit near your dog at a restaurant which they don't believe is really a "real" service dog, varieties complain that their neighbors use a pet in a "no pet" building because they claimed the animal is how to ask doctor for emotional support animal.
A few of the commentary comes with an indignant tone, plus some people are downright angry.
So how exactly does this affect those that legitimately own and employ a service animal to higher their lives? In lots of ways.
For one, it could it harder to navigate bureaucracy of the world when your claim of your disability as well as your service or emotional support animal's status is questioned. If your landlord or business owner has heard negative stories claiming that some people are abusing the device, it can cause these phones look suspiciously in any way claimants.
Some landlord and business owners have begun requesting proof of status, even though asking for written or another evidence isn't necessarily legal, although many those who own legitimate service animals and emotional support animals haven't taken advantage of registering them, and thus have no such documentation to create.
It is the suspicious attitude and illegal demands of some landlords and business owners that make registrations services like the Service Animal Registry of California so vital to legitimate owners.
Although registration is optional, it can help shortcut the housing rental and business access issues when the owner can certainly produce a simple document which will often fulfill the owner or landlord. Also, when using public spaces, it is often easier to hand over a document using a simple sentence stating, "This is really a service animal" and letting the other party see the information, instead of having a long-winded protracted conversation (or worse yet, argument) in public, with onlookers listening in and gathering across the discussion.
So, carry out some people scam the machine, or game the law? Sadly, the answer is "probably yes." In life, there is always room for abuse and individuals can attempt to take advantage of many systems that we as a society applied to protect the rights of those who need such protection. As an example, many drivers falsely display disabled parking placards to benefit from free and convenient parking. Not to mention the number of people that lie on their tax returns, claim improper tax deductions, abuse store return policies, or do other bad acts.
But that percentage of abuse, which in the area of service animal laws is hopefully small, might just be a very small price to pay when compared to the higher purpose of promoting access and equality for many.
In the end, you can not control any system making it 100% abuse proof. So tolerating the not enough people who scam service animal laws may be the price we gladly pay to ensure that the disabled in the great condition of California have equal access under law.