Ohio sees increase in disabled parking permits

A sharp increase in the number of disabled parking permits issued in Ohio has raised questions about whether they are too easy to acquire and how to meet the demand for spaces, a newspaper reported Thursday.
Associated Press
Oct 4, 2012

The state of Ohio handed out 300,000 of the disabled parking placards last year, which was a 21-percent increase from 2006, according to the Dayton Daily News.

Requirements to get a placard include a prescription from a health professional, which requires proof of a disability, an application to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles and a $3.50 fee.

A health care professional must certify that an applicant meets standards for disability. That can include the inability to walk 200 feet without resting, needing a cane, crutch or other assistance to walk, or use of portable oxygen.

Still, some consider the application process too lax.

"It is the general feeling of council members that it is too easy to get one of those placards," Linda Oda, chairwoman of the Governor's Council on People with Disabilities, told the newspaper.

Officials have noted drivers parking in disabled spaces without placards, using placards of living or deceased family members or even using their issued placards to park in disabled spaces when traveling to activities such as aerobics.

Dr. Jill Manahan, who practices internal medicine, says that the process to issue a handicapped placard is "definitely subjective."

"All a physician needs to do is write a prescription, and really, that's all that's involved," Manahan said. "Most of the time you see it done through orthopedists, but other people may have chronic pain or extreme obesity. There's no set-in-stone criteria."

However, experts caution people not to assume a placard is being misused when they see a driver without an obvious handicap.

"There may be people with a heart issue," said Kathy McMahon-Klosterman, a Miami University professor who has worked in special education. "Maybe they've only got so many steps in them."

Fines for inappropriate disabled space parking, which range from $250 to $500, usually are posted next to the spaces. Some say those reminders aren't enough to discourage wrongdoing.

According to the Americans with Disabilities Act, one out of every 25 parking spots must be accessible to the handicapped, and one of every eight of these handicapped parking spaces has to be van accessible. If there are 500 to 1,000 parking spaces, 2 percent of them must be handicapped accessible. For parking lots with more than 1,000 spaces, 1 of every 100 spaces must be accessible.

 

Comments

Eph 2 8-10

And then there are the USPS and UPS trucks that block or park in them because they can't find a close spot. One USPS guy, years ago, told me that government vehicles can park there--he found out differently!

grandmasgirl

There is abuse in every government sponsered program. I know people who really need a handicapped spot. Then there are those who have a placard or use a deceased person's who park in a handicap spot and walk up and down the mall, or to the back of Mennard's or Wal-Mart. All you have to do to see abuse of the system is go to Cedar Point, look at the handicap spaces (some of which is more than 500 away. Watch the people get out, walk to the entrance, walk all day and come out to their cars. If they can walk all day at CP, they don't need a placard.

starryeyes83

And if you have only X mount of handicap spaces, and, you get MORE than X amount of (true) disabled people, shopping at the same time, someone is going to still gonna be S.O.L.

OR -- I've seen some drivers use the non parking zone ( so they take advantage of it, too)

Then again, there are just some disabilites you can't see from the outside. Balance problems, for instance. Not everyone likes to use a cane.

Factitious

Gaming the system isn't exclusive to government. Some people are selfish and will abuse any system when they think the risk proposition is in their favor, from "calling in sick" to stealing.

There is a school of thought that says every crime is a form of stealing. Murder steals someone's life, and tax cheating steals money from the people who must make up the difference, and improperly using a handicapped place might deny it to someone who genuinely needs it.

Licorice Schtick

Don't be too quick to judge. I once saw an obviously able young man blithely roll into the best blue spot and bound into the store. My indignation softened when he came out a moment later pushing a wheelchair occupied by an elderly and frail-looking person.

On the other hand, I'm also aware of a high school athlete who was in the habit of using his dad's mirror hanger to park in a handicapped spot daily. I wonder if he ever found out what the fine was.

swiss cheese kat's picture
swiss cheese kat

I was at the store last week following behind an old lady who was just about to park in the handicapped spot when out of nowhere the walmart queen pulls in the space and 6 of them roll out of one of them cars with huge chrome wheels on it. On my way into the store I could not help myself and took the cap off my pop and threw it in the window and onto the front seat of that car with huge chrome wheels.

feedthetrolls

fatties

Swamp Fox

Watched a young man, about 25, very fit looking, driving a Corvette with a disabled placard, park in a handicap space, exited his vehicle smoking and entered the store, about 10 minutes later he exited the store with a 12 pack of beer, is stupid a disability?..

deertracker

You can only get one from your doctor at the low low cost of an office visit!

spin35

I once knew a doctor, who, after many tactful "discussions" with a patient, finally told her that fat was not a handicap. Needless to say, she never went back to that doctor. You know she got one from someone else, though. But yes, there are many out there who abuse them. I actually have to argue frequently with a family member, who will use a deceased family member's placard whenever places are busy. If you need one that badly, go get your own, and leave the spots to someone who truly needs them.

wiredmama222

I have a disability "sticker", but each time it comes up for renewal, I must prove my disability. Mine is for my lupus which includes my breathing problems, bone degeneration and difficulty walking. I go to CP, one ever five or six years but must sit down more than I walk, and dont enjoy the rides that flip me round and round. I like to see the lights and people so I can't walk "all day" as some have said. I can't walk fast and it takes me awhile even to shop for groceries.

Nothing makes me mader than to see a young person get a space meant for a handicap person. I thani you swiss cheese kat. You did what my hubby has wanted to do more than once. Thank you, thank you, thank you. LOL.

I just talked with a Perkins police officer who would love nothing more than to sit and give tickets at Krogers to those who violate the law by misusing the parking laws.

Sometime they give these out too readily. Mine is HARD to get. Ask any truly disabled person at time of renewal who needs one. We go through alot to get them renewed if the doctor is honorable. If you go through a cheap doctor who is dishonest, thens yes, deertracker, it does only cost the price of an office visit. Glad my doctor is more honest than that.

Sandusky Register Reader's picture
Sandusky Regist...

A doctor who values his/her license just won't indiscrimnately sign an application for a handicapped parking placard. They have to have documented proof of a disability in that persons medical file before they sign for it. In my opinion the whole country has a rise of handicapped people partially due to poor and or pesticide filled diet, lack of exercise and modern conveniences, and machinery taking over what used to be done by sweaty manual labor.

wiredmama222

AMEN....and doctors who are fooled by people who are great actors at a doctor's office.

Mr. D

For all you nay sayers, pray you never become handocapped in any way. if you do just call it karma!