Service Animals, Emotional Support, and Guide Dogs2607894
Sadly, some people are asking whether "service animal" laws are being abused by those that want to scam the system.
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 system. You hear some complain they had to sit near your dog at a restaurant which they don't believe is really a "real" service dog, or others complain that the neighbors use a pet in a "no pet" building simply because they claimed the pet is emotional support animal.
Some of the commentary comes with an indignant tone, and some people are downright angry.
How can this affect people who legitimately own and employ a service animal to raised their lives? In lots of 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. In case a landlord or business proprietor has heard negative stories claiming that many people are abusing the machine, it can cause these phones look suspiciously at all claimants.
Some landlord and business owners have begun seeking proof of status, even though asking for written or another evidence is not always legal, although many owners of legitimate service animals and emotional support animals never have 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 such as the Service Animal Registry of California so vital to legitimate owners.
Although registration is optional, it will also help shortcut the housing rental and business access issues once the owner can create a simple document that will often match the owner or landlord. Also, when using public spaces, it is often easier to give a document using a simple sentence stating, "This is 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, 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 then is "probably yes." In everyday life, there is always room for abuse the ones can try 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 take advantage of free and convenient parking. Not forgetting the number of folks who lie on their own tax returns, claim improper tax deductions, abuse shop 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 investment when compared to the higher goal of promoting access and equality for all.
In the end, you can not control any system to 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 inside the great condition of California have equal access under law.