Service Animals, Emotional Support Animals, and Guide Dogs4356655
Sadly, many 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 device. You hear some complain they had to sit near a dog at a restaurant that they don't believe can be a "real" service dog, forms of languages complain that the neighbors possess a pet in a "no pet" building since they claimed the pet is esa letter.
A few of the commentary comes with an indignant tone, and a few people are downright angry.
How can this affect those who legitimately own and employ a service animal to better their lives? In several 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. If your landlord or company owner has heard negative stories claiming that many people are abusing the machine, it can cause them to look suspiciously at all claimants.
Some landlord and business people have begun asking for proof of status, even though asking for written or other evidence might not be legal, and even though many owners of 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 owners that make registrations services such as the Service Animal Registry of California so vital to 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 that may often match the owner or landlord. Also, when using public spaces, it is often easier to give a document having a simple sentence stating, "This can be a service animal" and letting another party browse the information, instead of having a long-winded protracted conversation (or even worse, argument) in public, with onlookers listening in and gathering round the discussion.
So, carry out some people scam the device, or game regulations? Sadly, the reply is "probably yes." In your life, there is always room for abuse and individuals can try to take advantage of many systems that we as a society set up to protect the rights of those that 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 who lie on the tax returns, claim improper tax deductions, abuse retail store return policies, or do other bad acts.
However that percentage of abuse, which in 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 many.
In the end, you can not control any system to make it 100% abuse proof. So tolerating the few people who scam service animal laws may be the price we gladly pay to ensure the disabled in the great condition of California have equal access under law.