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Abuse of Handicap Plates & Placards

Mesquite Local News - 9/13/2017

Finding an open handicap parking spot isn't always easy today, especially at medical facilities, such as Hospitals and in retirement communities. A disabled plate among retirees in warmer climates are at an all-time high, and has been a little frustrating for others? so when I drive around the retirement community it's no surprise that roughly 50% of them have disabled plates. Occasionally I spot an older gentleman driving a Corvette, which sits low to the ground but has a disabled plate. Watching him get in or out of this type of vehicle? he shows no signs of a disability. I can't help but wonder what his disability might be, but I'm well aware that there are many disabilities not visual to the eye. One problem I have is watching an able bodied person walk with no apparent disabilities, and takes the last handicap spot in front of a place, such as a physician's office , so the one who really needs it (hardly able to walk, needing assistance,) has to park far out from the establishment. It's clear in many instances that retirees have a sense of entitlement, just like the younger generations they complain about.

I decided to check with the DMV to see how one qualifies for the disabled plate. I will share the following stipulations for what a disabled plate or placard may be used; Unable to walk 200 ft. without resting or needing assistance; A lung disease with forced respiratory or use of oxygen; serious cardiac conditions and lastly a 'severe' limited ability to walk due to arthritic or neurological conditions. After I checked with several states, they all seem to be about the same, but what's interesting is when I see these vehicles pulling up to recreation centers (with disabled plates) and the majority don't appear to have these types of conditions, especially when they're attending lawn or regular bowling, swimming laps for timely lengths, or engaging in other various sports. Entitlement behavior seems to be the way of the world today, but I for one don't have to like it. Lastly, there will always be the handicap abusers. Some won't have a tag and will park in a handicap spot figuring it's only for a minute, while others are capable but they don the disability plate so what the heck, they'll take that parking space regardless, after all?maybe they're just tired. These abusers are taking away from people with 'real' disabilities. The department of transportation recognizes that many retirees became disabled in colder climates and needed those plates at one time. However, many moved west for health reasons, and after much time those disabilities were no longer severe, yet they kept their disabled plates; after all?some feel they earned it.

For those of you that spot handicap parking fraud you'll be happy to know there is a dedicated website, in which you may post a photo as well as their plates, for all to see. HandicappedFraud.org is where I began my search, but you'll find current offenders through any state at www.myparkingsign.com/handicapped-fraud . I know most people like to find a close parking spot once in a while, but the reality is ? who couldn't use a little bit of exercise now and again, it's the road to a healthier and happier lifestyle.

Make your week count.

 
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