Service Animals, Emotional Support Animals, and Guide Dogs7428874
Sadly, some people are asking whether "service animal" laws are now being abused by those that want to scam the system.
There have been news stories, articles, opinion pieces and other editorials where people rant and complain about people they believe to be abusing the device. You hear some complain that they to sit near your pet dog at a restaurant they don't believe is a "real" service dog, forms of languages complain their neighbors have a pet in a "no pet" building because they claimed the animal is emotional support animal letter.
A few 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 lots of ways.
For one, it could it more difficult to navigate bureaucracy on the planet when your claim of a disability along with your service or emotional support animal's status is questioned. If your landlord or business owner has heard negative stories claiming that some individuals are abusing the machine, it can cause them to look suspiciously in any way claimants.
Some landlord and companies have begun requesting proof of status, despite the fact that asking for written or any other evidence is not always 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 produce.
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 vital to legitimate owners.
Although registration is optional, it can benefit shortcut the housing rental and business access issues when 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 hand over a document with a simple sentence stating, "This can be a service animal" and letting one other party read the information, rather than having a long-winded protracted conversation (or worse yet, argument) in public, with onlookers listening in and gathering round the discussion.
So, do some people scam the system, or game regulations? Sadly, the answer then is "probably yes." In life, there is always room for abuse the ones can make an effort to take advantage of many systems that individuals as a society set up to protect the rights of those who need such protection. As an example, many drivers falsely display disabled parking placards to benefit from free and convenient parking. Not to mention the number of folks who lie on their tax returns, claim improper tax deductions, abuse store return policies, or do other bad acts.
However that percentage of abuse, which around service animal laws is hopefully small, could well be a very small investment when compared to the higher purpose of promoting access and equality for all.
In the end, you cannot control any system to really make it 100% abuse proof. So tolerating the not enough people who scam service animal laws will be the price we gladly pay to ensure the disabled within the great condition of California have equal access under law.