Service Animals, Emotional Support, and Guide Dogs9757448
Sadly, some individuals are asking whether "service animal" laws are now being abused by people 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 believe to be abusing the system. You hear some complain that they to sit near your pet dog at a restaurant they don't believe can be a "real" service dog, or others complain that their neighbors possess a pet in the "no pet" building since they claimed your pet is emotional support animal letter.
A few of the commentary posseses an indignant tone, plus some people are downright angry.
So how exactly does this affect people who legitimately own and use a service animal to raised their lives? In several ways.
For one, it may it harder to navigate bureaucracy around the globe when your claim of a disability along with 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 at all claimants.
Some landlord and companies have begun seeking proof of status, even though asking for written or other evidence isn't necessarily legal, and even though many people who just love legitimate service animals and emotional support animals haven't 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 people that make registrations services such as 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 create a simple document that will often satisfy the owner or landlord. Also, when using public spaces, it's easier to give over a document having a simple sentence stating, "This is a service animal" and letting one other party see the information, rather than having a long-winded protracted conversation (or even worse, argument) in public, with onlookers listening in and gathering around the discussion.
So, do some people scam the device, or game the law? Sadly, the answer is "probably yes." In everyday life, there is always room for abuse and individuals can attempt to take advantage of many systems that we as a society set up to protect the rights of those that need such protection. For instance, many drivers falsely display disabled parking placards to benefit from free and convenient parking. As well as the number of folks who lie on their tax returns, claim improper tax deductions, abuse shop return policies, or do other bad acts.
But that percentage of abuse, which around service animal laws is hopefully small, could well be a very small investment when compared to the higher purpose of promoting access and equality for all.
In the end, you can't 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 within the great condition of California have equal access under law.