Service Animals, Emotional Support, and Guide Dogs7054145
Sadly, many people are asking whether "service animal" laws are increasingly being abused by those who want to scam the device.
There have been news stories, articles, opinion pieces and other editorials where people rant and complain about people they think to be abusing the machine. You hear some complain that they to sit near a dog at a restaurant that they don't believe is a "real" service dog, or others complain their neighbors use a pet inside a "no pet" building because they claimed your pet is emotional support animal.
Some of the commentary has an indignant tone, and a few people are downright angry.
So how exactly does this affect people who legitimately own and use a service animal to better their lives? In many ways.
For one, it can it harder to navigate bureaucracy of the world when your claim of your disability and 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 phones look suspiciously in any way claimants.
Some landlord and companies have begun asking for proof of status, although asking for written or other evidence isn't necessarily legal, although many those who own legitimate service animals and emotional support animals haven't taken advantage of registering them, and thus have no such documentation to create.
It is the suspicious attitude and illegal demands of some landlords and business owners that make registrations services such as the Service Animal Registry of California so fundamental to legitimate owners.
Although registration is optional, it can benefit shortcut the housing rental and business access issues if the owner can create a simple document which will often match the owner or landlord. Also, when utilizing public spaces, it's easier to give a document using a simple sentence stating, "This can be a service animal" and letting the other party see the information, as opposed to 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 device, or game regulations? Sadly, the answer is "probably yes." In your life, there is always room for abuse and individuals can try to take advantage of many systems that we as a society applied to protect the rights of people who need such protection. For example, 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, could well be a very small price to pay when compared to the higher objective of promoting access and equality for many.
In the end, you cannot control any system to make it 100% abuse proof. So tolerating the few people who scam service animal laws is the price we gladly pay to ensure the disabled within the great condition of California have equal access under law.