Service Animals, Emotional Support, and Guide Dogs6432722
Sadly, some individuals are asking whether "service animal" laws are increasingly being abused by people who want to scam the machine.
There have been news stories, articles, opinion pieces and other editorials where people rant and complain about people they feel to be abusing the machine. You hear some complain that they to sit near a 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 simply because they claimed the animal is esa letter.
A number of the commentary posseses 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 could it harder to navigate bureaucracy on the planet when your claim of a disability along with your service or emotional support animal's status is questioned. In case a landlord or business owner has heard negative stories claiming that some people are abusing the machine, it can cause these to look suspiciously in any way claimants.
Some landlord and business owners have begun seeking proof of status, despite the fact that asking for written or any other evidence isn't necessarily legal, and even though many owners of legitimate service animals and emotional support animals haven't taken advantage of registering them, and so have no such documentation to create.
It is the suspicious attitude and illegal demands of some landlords and business owners that make registrations services like the Service Animal Registry of California so important legitimate owners.
Although registration is optional, it will also help shortcut the housing rental and business access issues when the owner can produce a simple document that may often satisfy the owner or landlord. Also, when using public spaces, it is often easier to hand over a document using a simple sentence stating, "This can be a service animal" and letting another party read the information, instead of having a long-winded protracted conversation (or worse yet, argument) in public, with onlookers listening in and gathering round the discussion.
So, do some people scam the machine, or game what the law states? Sadly, the answer then 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 put in place 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 that lie on their own 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 price to pay when compared to the higher objective of promoting access and equality for all.
In the end, you can not control any system to really make it 100% abuse proof. So tolerating the few individuals who scam service animal laws may be the price we gladly pay to ensure that the disabled in the great condition of California have equal access under law.