Service Animals, Emotional Support Animals, and Guide Dogs9501861
Sadly, some individuals are asking whether "service animal" laws are increasingly being abused by those that want to scam the machine.
There have been news stories, articles, opinion pieces as well as other editorials where people rant and complain about people they think to be abusing the machine. You hear some complain that they had to sit near a dog at a restaurant that they don't believe can be a "real" service dog, varieties complain that the neighbors use a pet inside a "no pet" building simply because they claimed the animal is emotional support animal registration.
A few of the commentary has an indignant tone, and a few people are downright angry.
So how exactly does this affect those who legitimately own and employ a service animal to better their lives? In several ways.
For one, it could it more difficult to navigate bureaucracy of the world when your claim of the 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 device, it can cause them to look suspiciously in any way claimants.
Some landlord and companies have begun requesting proof of status, despite the fact that asking for written or another evidence isn't necessarily legal, and even though many those who own legitimate service animals and emotional support animals never have taken advantage of registering them, and therefore have no such documentation to create.
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 fundamental to legitimate owners.
Although registration is optional, it can benefit shortcut the housing rental and business access issues if the owner can create a simple document that may often satisfy the owner or landlord. Also, when utilizing public spaces, it is usually easier to hand over a document having a simple sentence stating, "This can be a service animal" and letting one other party read the information, as opposed to having a long-winded protracted conversation (or even worse, argument) in public areas, with onlookers listening in and gathering around the discussion.
So, do some people scam the system, or game what the law states? Sadly, the answer is "probably yes." In everyday life, there is always room for abuse and people can make an effort to take advantage of many systems that we as a society set up to protect the rights of those who 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 people who lie on their tax returns, claim improper tax deductions, abuse store return policies, or do other bad acts.
However that percentage of abuse, which around service animal laws is hopefully small, might just be a very small price to pay when compared to the higher purpose 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 may be the price we gladly pay to ensure that the disabled inside the great condition of California have equal access under law.