Service Animals, Emotional Support, and Guide Dogs4231341
Sadly, some individuals are asking whether "service animal" laws are now being abused by those who 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 feel to be abusing the device. You hear some complain that they to sit near your dog at a restaurant which they don't believe can be a "real" service dog, or others complain that their neighbors possess a pet inside a "no pet" building since they claimed the animal is esa letter.
Some of the commentary has an indignant tone, and a few people are downright angry.
How does this affect people who legitimately own and use a service animal to better their lives? In several ways.
For one, it may it harder to navigate bureaucracy on the planet when your claim of a disability and 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 system, it can cause these phones 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 might not be legal, although many those who own legitimate service animals and emotional support animals never have 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 companies that make registrations services like the Service Animal Registry of California so important legitimate owners.
Although registration is optional, it can benefit shortcut the housing rental and business access issues if the owner can certainly produce a simple document which will often fulfill the owner or landlord. Also, when using public spaces, it is usually easier to hand over a document having a simple sentence stating, "This can be a service animal" and letting another party see the information, as opposed to having a long-winded protracted conversation (or worse, argument) in public areas, with onlookers listening in and gathering across the discussion.
So, do some people scam the device, or game what the law states? Sadly, the answer is "probably yes." In life, there is always room for abuse and people can attempt to take advantage of many systems that individuals as a society put in place 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 folks who lie on their own tax returns, claim improper tax deductions, abuse store 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 those.
In the end, you cannot control any system making it 100% abuse proof. So tolerating the few people who scam service animal laws may be the price we gladly pay to ensure that the disabled within the great condition of California have equal access under law.