Service Animals, Emotional Support Animals, and Guide Dogs8373259
Sadly, many people are asking whether "service animal" laws are being abused by people who want to scam the device.
There have been news stories, articles, opinion pieces and other editorials where people rant and complain about people they think to be abusing the device. You hear some complain they had to sit near your dog at a restaurant that they don't believe is a "real" service dog, or others complain their neighbors use a pet in a "no pet" building since they claimed your pet is esa doctors.
Some of the commentary has an indignant tone, and some people are downright angry.
So how exactly does this affect people who legitimately own and employ a service animal to better their lives? In lots of ways.
For one, it may it more difficult to navigate bureaucracy on the planet when your claim of your disability as well as your service or emotional support animal's status is questioned. In case a landlord or business proprietor has heard negative stories claiming that many people are abusing the system, it can cause these to look suspiciously at all claimants.
Some landlord and business owners have begun requesting proof of status, despite the fact that asking for written or other evidence isn't necessarily legal, although many owners of legitimate service animals and emotional support animals have not taken advantage of registering them, and therefore have no such documentation to make.
It is the suspicious attitude and illegal demands of some landlords and business owners that make registrations services just like the Service Animal Registry of California so fundamental to legitimate owners.
Although registration is optional, it can benefit shortcut the housing rental and business access issues if the owner can certainly produce a simple document that will often satisfy the owner or landlord. Also, when working with public spaces, it is often easier to give a document with a simple sentence stating, "This is really a service animal" and letting another party browse the information, as opposed to having a long-winded protracted conversation (or worse yet, argument) in public areas, with onlookers listening in and gathering round the discussion.
So, do some people scam the system, or game regulations? Sadly, the answer is "probably yes." In everyday 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. As well as the number of people that 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 service animal laws is hopefully small, could well be a very small price to pay when compared to the higher purpose 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 will be the price we gladly pay to ensure that the disabled in the great state of California have equal access under law.