Service Animals, Emotional Support Animals, and Guide Dogs8096324
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 along with other editorials where people rant and complain about people they believe to be abusing the device. You hear some complain they had to sit near a dog at a restaurant that they don't believe can be a "real" service dog, forms of languages complain their neighbors possess a pet in the "no pet" building since they claimed your pet is emotional support animal letter.
A number of the commentary has an indignant tone, plus some people are downright angry.
How does this affect those that legitimately own and employ a service animal to better their lives? In lots of ways.
For one, it could 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 your landlord or company owner has heard negative stories claiming that some people are abusing the system, it can cause these phones look suspiciously whatsoever claimants.
Some landlord and companies have begun requesting proof of status, although asking for written or any other 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 make.
It is the suspicious attitude and illegal demands of some landlords and business owners that make registrations services like the Service Animal Registry of California so important legitimate owners.
Although registration is optional, it can help shortcut the housing rental and business access issues when the owner can produce a simple document that will often satisfy the owner or landlord. Also, when utilizing public spaces, it is often easier to give a document with a simple sentence stating, "This is really a service animal" and letting the other party see the information, as opposed to having a long-winded protracted conversation (or worse, argument) in public places, with onlookers listening in and gathering around the discussion.
So, carry out some people scam the machine, or game what the law states? 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 we as a society set up to protect the rights of those that 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 people who lie on their own 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, is arguably a very small price to pay when compared to the higher goal of promoting access and equality for those.
In the end, you can not control any system to really make it 100% abuse proof. So tolerating the few individuals who scam service animal laws will be the price we gladly pay to make sure that the disabled inside the great state of California have equal access under law.