Service Animals, Emotional Support, and Guide Dogs1176714
Sadly, many people are asking whether "service animal" laws are now 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 feel to be abusing the machine. You hear some complain they had to sit near a dog at a restaurant which they don't believe is a "real" service dog, or others complain their neighbors possess a pet in the "no pet" building simply because they claimed your pet is esa doctors.
A few of the commentary posseses an indignant tone, plus some people are downright angry.
How can this affect those who legitimately own and employ a service animal to raised their lives? In several ways.
For one, it may it more difficult to navigate bureaucracy around the globe when your claim of your disability along with your service or emotional support animal's status is questioned. If your landlord or business proprietor has heard negative stories claiming that some people are abusing the machine, it can cause them to look suspiciously at all claimants.
Some landlord and business people have begun seeking proof of status, despite the fact that asking for written or other evidence isn't necessarily legal, and even though many those who own legitimate service animals and emotional support animals haven't taken advantage of registering them, and so have no such documentation to make.
It is the suspicious attitude and illegal demands of some landlords and companies that make registrations services just like the Service Animal Registry of California so vital to legitimate owners.
Although registration is optional, it can benefit shortcut the housing rental and business access issues when the owner can certainly produce a simple document that will often match the owner or landlord. Also, when utilizing public spaces, it's easier to hand over a document having a simple sentence stating, "This is really a service animal" and letting one other party browse the information, instead of having a long-winded protracted conversation (or worse yet, argument) in public places, with onlookers listening in and gathering across the discussion.
So, do some people scam the system, or game the law? Sadly, the reply is "probably yes." In life, there is always room for abuse and individuals can make an effort 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. Not to mention the number of people 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 in the area of service animal laws is hopefully small, is arguably a very small investment when compared to the higher purpose of promoting access and equality for those.
In the end, you can't control any system to make it 100% abuse proof. So tolerating the few individuals who scam service animal laws is the price we gladly pay to ensure the disabled in the great state of California have equal access under law.