Service Animals, Emotional Support, and Guide Dogs5864823
Sadly, some individuals are asking whether "service animal" laws are being abused by people who want to scam the system.
There have been news stories, articles, opinion pieces along with 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 that they don't believe is really a "real" service dog, varieties complain that the neighbors possess a pet in the "no pet" building since they claimed the pet is emotional support animal letter.
A number of the commentary comes with an indignant tone, and some people are downright angry.
How can this affect those that legitimately own and employ a service animal to higher their lives? In many ways.
For one, it can it more challenging to navigate bureaucracy around the globe when your claim of the disability and your service or emotional support animal's status is questioned. If a landlord or company owner has heard negative stories claiming that many people are abusing the device, it can cause them to look suspiciously whatsoever claimants.
Some landlord and companies have begun asking for proof of status, even though asking for written or another evidence is not always legal, and even though many people who just love legitimate service animals and emotional support animals haven't taken advantage of registering them, and therefore have no such documentation to produce.
It is the suspicious attitude and illegal demands of some landlords and business owners that make registrations services just like the Service Animal Registry of California so fundamental to legitimate owners.
Although registration is optional, it will also help shortcut the housing rental and business access issues if 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 give a document with a simple sentence stating, "This is a service animal" and letting one other party browse the information, rather than having a long-winded protracted conversation (or even worse, argument) in public places, with onlookers listening in and gathering around the discussion.
So, carry out 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 try to take advantage of many systems that people as a society set up to protect the rights of people who need such protection. For instance, many drivers falsely display disabled parking placards to benefit from free and convenient parking. Not forgetting the number of people who lie on the tax returns, claim improper tax deductions, abuse retail store return policies, or do other bad acts.
But 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 goal of promoting access and equality for many.
In the end, you can not control any system to really make it 100% abuse proof. So tolerating the few people who scam service animal laws will be the price we gladly pay to ensure the disabled inside the great state of California have equal access under law.