Service Animals, Emotional Support Animals, and Guide Dogs3651950
Sadly, many people are asking whether "service animal" laws are increasingly being abused by those that 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 machine. You hear some complain that they to sit near a dog at a restaurant which they don't believe is really a "real" service dog, or others complain that the neighbors use a pet inside a "no pet" building simply because they claimed your pet is emotional support animal.
Some of the commentary comes with an indignant tone, and a few people are downright angry.
How does this affect those that legitimately own and make use of a service animal to better their lives? In lots of ways.
For one, it may it harder to navigate bureaucracy of the world when your claim of your disability as well as 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 device, it can cause these phones look suspiciously whatsoever claimants.
Some landlord and business owners have begun requesting proof of status, despite the fact that asking for written or other evidence isn't necessarily legal, although many people who just love 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 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 produce a simple document which will often match the owner or landlord. Also, when utilizing public spaces, it is often 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 round the discussion.
So, carry out some people scam the device, or game what the law states? Sadly, the answer then is "probably yes." In your life, there is always room for abuse and people can make an effort to take advantage of many systems that people 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 forgetting the number of people that 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, might just be a very small investment when compared to the higher objective of promoting access and equality for those.
In the end, you cannot control any system to make it 100% abuse proof. So tolerating the few individuals who scam service animal laws is the price we gladly pay to ensure that the disabled within the great state of California have equal access under law.