Service Animals, Emotional Support Animals, and Guide Dogs6828016
Sadly, some people are asking whether "service animal" laws are being abused by those who want to scam the system.
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 machine. You hear some complain that they to sit near your dog at a restaurant they don't believe is really a "real" service dog, varieties complain their neighbors have a pet inside a "no pet" building because they claimed your pet is emotional support animal registration.
Some of the commentary has an indignant tone, and some people are downright angry.
How does this affect those who legitimately own and make use of a service animal to higher their lives? In lots of ways.
For one, it may it more difficult 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 a landlord or company owner has heard negative stories claiming that many people are abusing the machine, it can cause them to look suspiciously in any way claimants.
Some landlord and companies have begun asking for proof of status, despite the fact that asking for written or other evidence is not always legal, and even though 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 produce.
It is the suspicious attitude and illegal demands of some landlords and business people 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 that will often satisfy the owner or landlord. Also, when using public spaces, it is often easier to give a document using a simple sentence stating, "This is a service animal" and letting the other party browse the information, instead of having a long-winded protracted conversation (or even worse, argument) in public areas, with onlookers listening in and gathering around the discussion.
So, perform some people scam the device, or game regulations? Sadly, the answer then is "probably yes." In your life, there is always room for abuse and people can try to take advantage of many systems that people as a society applied to protect the rights of people who need such protection. As an example, many drivers falsely display disabled parking placards to take advantage of free and convenient parking. Not to mention the number of people that lie on their own tax returns, claim improper tax deductions, abuse retail store return policies, or do other bad acts.
But that percentage of abuse, which in service animal laws is hopefully small, might just be a very small investment when compared to the higher goal of promoting access and equality for many.
In the end, you can't control any system to really make it 100% abuse proof. So tolerating the not enough people who scam service animal laws is the price we gladly pay to ensure the disabled inside the great state of California have equal access under law.