Service Animals, Emotional Support Animals, and Guide Dogs2878414
Sadly, some people are asking whether "service animal" laws are now being abused by those who 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 feel to be abusing the device. You hear some complain they had to sit near your dog at a restaurant which they don't believe is really a "real" service dog, forms of languages complain that their neighbors have a pet inside a "no pet" building simply because they claimed the animal is esa letter.
A number of the commentary comes with an indignant tone, and a few people are downright angry.
So how exactly does this affect those who legitimately own and employ a service animal to raised their lives? In several ways.
For one, it may it more difficult to navigate bureaucracy around the globe when your claim of the disability as well as your service or emotional support animal's status is questioned. If a landlord or business owner has heard negative stories claiming that many people are abusing the device, it can cause these to look suspiciously in any way claimants.
Some landlord and business owners have begun seeking proof of status, despite the fact that asking for written or other evidence might not be legal, and even though many those who own legitimate service animals and emotional support animals have not taken advantage of registering them, and thus have no such documentation to make.
It is the suspicious attitude and illegal demands of some landlords and companies that make registrations services just like the Service Animal Registry of California so fundamental to legitimate owners.
Although registration is optional, it will also help shortcut the housing rental and business access issues if the owner can produce a simple document which will often match the owner or landlord. Also, when using public spaces, it's easier to give a document using a simple sentence stating, "This can be a service animal" and letting another party browse the information, rather than having a long-winded protracted conversation (or even worse, argument) in public areas, with onlookers listening in and gathering across the discussion.
So, carry out some people scam the device, or game regulations? Sadly, the answer then is "probably yes." In life, there is always room for abuse and people can try to take advantage of many systems that we as a society put in place to protect the rights of those that need such protection. For example, many drivers falsely display disabled parking placards to benefit from free and convenient parking. Not to mention the number of people who lie on the 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, could well be a very small investment when compared to the higher goal of promoting access and equality for those.
In the end, you can't control any system to really make it 100% abuse proof. So tolerating the few individuals who scam service animal laws may be the price we gladly pay to ensure that the disabled inside the great state of California have equal access under law.