Service Animals, Emotional Support, and Guide Dogs5034262
Sadly, many people are asking whether "service animal" laws are being abused by those that want to scam the device.
There have been news stories, articles, opinion pieces and other editorials where people rant and complain about people they believe 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, varieties complain that their neighbors use a pet inside a "no pet" building because they claimed the pet is emotional support animal letter.
Some of the commentary comes with an indignant tone, plus some people are downright angry.
How does this affect those who legitimately own and make use of a service animal to better their lives? In several ways.
For one, it can it more challenging to navigate bureaucracy on the planet when your claim of your disability along with your service or emotional support animal's status is questioned. If a landlord or company owner has heard negative stories claiming that some individuals are abusing the machine, it can cause them to look suspiciously whatsoever claimants.
Some landlord and business owners have begun seeking proof of status, despite the fact that asking for written or any other evidence might not be legal, although many people who just love legitimate service animals and emotional support animals have not 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 important legitimate owners.
Although registration is optional, it can help shortcut the housing rental and business access issues once the owner can certainly produce a simple document which will often fulfill the owner or landlord. Also, when working with public spaces, it is usually easier to give over a document with a simple sentence stating, "This is really a service animal" and letting another party read the information, instead of having a long-winded protracted conversation (or worse yet, argument) in public areas, with onlookers listening in and gathering around the discussion.
So, perform some people scam the device, 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 individuals 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 take advantage of free and convenient parking. Not forgetting the number of people who lie on the tax returns, claim improper tax deductions, abuse shop 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 price to pay when compared to the higher objective of promoting access and equality for those.
In the end, you cannot 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 within the great state of California have equal access under law.