luvs2dreamSeptember 14, 2012

I'm sitting in my office at my desk while the other 4 women I work with are chatting and gossiping as usual. Their topic is people that need disability or a handicap tag can't seem to get them and people that obviously don't need them do have them. I have a handicap parking tag and they all know it. But they are talking like I'm not in the room. I am silent because I don't want to be alienated. I am too emotional to respond. But I'm mad at myself that I don't educate these woman. Not all handicaps are "obvious". Please do me the favor of educating the ignorant when you get the chance. Some day you may be in my place and looked down upon, judged, and made to feel emotionally bad along with feeling physically bad. Thanks.

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ravencajun Zone 8b TX

Believe me I share your thoughts and feelings! It angers me beyond belief that someone thinks they are able to determine how a person is disabled or not by looking at them. I so want to say wow where did you get your medical degree and amazing abilities of diagnosis.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 11:53AM
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Chemocurl zn5b/6a Indiana

Their topic is people that need disability or a handicap tag can't seem to get them and people that obviously don't need them do have them.
I've never heard of that happening.

Not all handicaps are "obvious".
I so agree with you. For so many people, just walking from point A to point B can be quite a struggle and put them in a lot of pain.

The only thing that steams me is to see what appears to be a young healthy person, park in a handicap spot and not have a handicap license plate or a tag hanging from the mirror. It happened recently at the supermarket and I just couldn't help myself. I just wrote "Handicap parking?" on a slip of paper and slipped it under the windshield wiper. I think a lot of the offenders make a habit of it, and 'think' that no one will notice them parking illegally, even for a short time. I wish more offenders would be warned or ticketed for illegally parking in the handicap spot. Often when I am driving my 94 year old handicapped friend around, there are no empty handicap spots, or she forgets to bring her hanging placard. When that happens, I drop her off at the door, and go park elsewhere and meet her inside.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 12:09PM
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ravencajun Zone 8b TX

It is extremely dangerous especially for those in wheelchairs to park in other places then have to wheel themselves behind cars to get to the building, you are below the level that most people are looking they are looking for walking people, I have nearly been hit because of that. I now will not go with out a person walking beside me even if it is a total stranger.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 12:29PM
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You're absolutely right that many handicaps are 'invisible'. You can't ever be sure, just by looking that a person is or is not handicapped.

However--part of my husband's job at the utility company was to weed out those who were fraudulantly using handicapped status to avoid paying their electric bills (if you're a Priority 4, you cannot be turned off, even if you've gone years without paying your bill, and owe 10's of thousands of $$$). It's very sad, that there are people out there--far MORE than you might think--who DO do that and who are not just stealing from big companies, or stealing parking from those who truly need it, but they're stealing from each and every one of us who pays our bill--because those unpaid bills are added to ours. You may even see it, if you look closely at your bill--some companies add it as a charge for 'societal benefits', others don't designate, they just add it into what you pay in other ways. Fact is, my husband would run into anywhere from a half dozen or so to a couple of DOZEN of people who were NOT handicapped but claiming they were EVERY WEEK. This is a huge problem in some areas. And your coworkers are right to be concerned because people lying to claim disability are hurting us all--not just by taking the best parking spaces, but by stealing electricity and often even disability benefits.

Please, speak up--first explain to these gals how many handicapped people aren't visibly identifiable. And then, go right ahead, and express YOUR outrage that people DO use these designations fraudulantly, and they're taking spaces that are needed by those who legitimately cannot walk long distances.

No one supports truly handicapped people as much as my husband and I--we've even raised puppies for the Seeing Eye, and done many other things to help those who have legitimate limits. But one of the things that I get the MOST upset about is those who steal and pretend to be handicapped--and as I've said, there are many. This is a serious subject. I do hope you've added your 2 cents worth to the discussion--you're more than entitled, and should in no way feel embarrassed or hesitant to speak up.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 12:42PM
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My first reaction was to think how horrible those coworkers are. I'm sorry you have to work with people like that.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 1:10PM
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You might enjoy this. The other day we came out of Walmart and a policeman was giving a ticket to some new car parked right out in front in a Handicapped parking place with no sticker, licence plate or tag. My son congratulated the policemn What a surprise the driver would get when he came out to get in the car

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 1:26PM
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Thank you to Pam and all for hearing my frustration.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 1:27PM
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My sis had a sticker following her surgery because she was a long time healing. My problem with the system is that family members use the car and the sticker. "Oh, lets take Mom's car we can park in the handicap area". I have heard my own friends say I don't need this anymore but I use it. We have or used to have an organization that looked for cars parked in handicapped areas with no tag/sticker and will take a picture of the area and the car tag and turn them in. It is a huge fine if you get caught parking there illegally.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 1:37PM
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I'm sorry you're having a bad day.

I have seen friends and family and acquaintances blatently abuse handicap tags so I sometimes make the assumption that others are also abusing the privilege. I suspect if there were some sort of color coded tag based on severity of handicap and a date expiration so the tags didn't get used in perpetuity that there would be less abuse and hard feelings on the subject.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 2:08PM
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Why did you feel you couldn't say something? Do you feel that your disability is so personal to you that you can't share it with coworkers? For example, "I couldn't help over hearing your conversation. As you know, I have a handicapped sticker due to my.....(fill in the blank.) By looking at me, a stranger would never guess that I was entitled to this. It is probably frustrating for those not in this position to realize that some handicapps are invisible and we would not to be able function efficiently without this entitlement.
They might very well say to you that they were not discussing you. If they were, then you certainly cleared up their misconseption.
Honestly, some people just need to be educated. I am not saying that this should be your role in the outside world, but it could make for better relations in your work world.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 2:29PM
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Chemocurl zn5b/6a Indiana

and a date expiration so the tags didn't get used in perpetuity that there would be less abuse and hard feelings on the subject.
Here in Indiana license plates are renewed yearly and the placards for hanging from the rear view mirror are boldly dated so one can see the date at a glance.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 3:25PM
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The best retort I've heard when one man was approached by a stranger and told "you don't look disabled" was to answer "you don't look like a Doctor either".

Unfortuntely too many socially handicapped (fill in the blank) take away the credibility of those with invisible disabilities. Sometimes they get caught though and fines are appropriately hefty.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 3:34PM
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Here in Massachusetts they have put some teeth in the handicapped parking laws.

First offense parking in a handicapped spot without a handicapped plate or tag results in a parking ticket that demands a court appearance, (no pay and go fines on this one).

First offense is a $500 fine payable within 5 days or serve 60 days in jail.
Second offense is a $500 fine, ten days in jail and 1 yr revocation of driving priviledges.
A third offense is a $1500 fine, permanent impound of the vehicle and permanent revocation of driving priviledges.

Fraudulent use of a Handicapped Parking permit is a $500 fine and one year suspension of driving prividges.

To get a handicapped parking permit you have to first get a letter signed by your doctor requesting the permit. The doctor is required to state whether it is a permanent or temporary disability. If it is permanent you can get a license tag with the handicapped permit. If the disability is less than 1 yr the doctor has to note the anticipated length of the disability and you get a permit to hang on the mirror, and the permit has the expiration date in bold writing on the bottom of the tag. If your disability goes longer than first anticipated you have to get another letter from your doctor.

Now taking this to the next level, In Massachusetts anyone who works for a private security agency, such as mall security, Walmart security, hospital security and such may be permitted to carry a firearm, but if so, they must be a member of the cities auxiliary police force. As a sworn enforcement officer on the auxiliary police force they may write official citations. I have a friend who is a security officer at WalMart and he says they write an average of 35 parking tickets a week for parking in a handicapped space without a permit. He says quite often they see patrons return to the car and see a Walmart security man writing a ticket, so they don't take it serious, they just pull it off the car and toss it on the ground, not realizing that the ticket requires a court appearance, and when the ticket is called to be heard in teh court, if the offender does not appear, the judge issues a "Capias" for non appearance, A Capias is an order to law enforcement to locate the person and "pickup & commit" which means when they are picked up they go straight to jail and will be held there until they get a court hearing,,,absolutely no bail.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 7:42PM
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My DH is one of those who don't appear to be handicapped. He has severe breathing problems, and congestive heart failure. We do use the space if it is avaiable, other than that, I will try to drop him off and then park. But my legs have been bothering me also so I try to park closer. I don't get upset if the person does not appear to be handicapped, because we do have many with severe breathing problems due to the jobs--many farmers due to the dust and sprays.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 8:18PM
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Sounds like Minnesota must have more restrictive requirements than do some states. Minnesota's definition of a disabled individual for the purposes of getting disabled parking permit/license plates: •A person who has a cardiac condition with functional limitations classified as Class III or Class IV according to American Heart Association standards.
•A person who relies on portable oxygen.
•A person with an arterial oxygen tension (PAO2) of less than 60 mm/Hg on regular, room-temperature air, while at rest.
•A person restricted by a respiratory disease to the extent that forced expiratory volume is less than one liter per second, when measured by spirometry.
•A person who has lost an arm or leg and does not have or cannot use an artificial limb.
•A person who cannot walk without the aid of another person, a walker, cane, crutches, braces, prosthetic device, or a wheelchair because of the disability.

I think you should have spoken up if it bothered you so much. The problem is you can't educate people if you won't speak up. Now you're frustrated and nothing has changed. There's also the possibility that you weren't understanding what they were saying either. In any case, I'd suggest you try to not let it eat you up.

And I think people *should* be concerned about abuses of the handicapped spaces instead of trying to rationalize everything away. We all know there's abuse out there. AFAIC when someone is being dropped at the door and picked up, they should not be entitled to the handicapped spot. Why should the fully capable person be enjoying that benefit? Get real. That space is intended for someone with problems getting into and out of the place and with someone "healthy" stealing that spot, they're taking the use opportunity away from someone else who actually needs it. Those spots are not intended to be a perk for helping grandma out occasionally. They're there for people who have legitimate problems getting in and out.

I've also seen where someone uses a handicapped person's vehicle and takes advantage of it. Glossing it over and hiding in shame is a shame. People should turn criminals in and hopefully get the permit revoked.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 8:35PM
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Lazypup, can you cite your source for that information? I used to live in MA and I can't find anything about those sort of penalties, and I would like to read more about it. Thanks.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 8:36PM
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I just got my handicapped permit last month and while at the DMV they gave me a pamphlet on the new laws.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 9:09PM
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Thanks, I will call them and ask. Maybe they can send me a copy.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 9:32PM
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I have a request for those who do use a handicap permit. Whenever possible, please be aware of avoiding the "van accessible" spaces when possible. I am in a wheelchair with a lift that uses the side door. I must have access to the marked space in order to get out of the van and very often there will be a car parked in the "van accessible" space while the others might be open.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 10:01PM
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I have a Handicapped Parking Hanger from back in the days when I was getting kidney dialysis three mornings a week. altho I looked perfectly normal, I could barely walk from my car to the hospital.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2012 at 12:36PM
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I am so glad you brought up this subject. However, I do agree with a few that advised you to speak up to your colleagues to educate them.

I'm in a wheelchair and since I'm the primary driver and owner of the vehicle, my license plate is marked.

One time, I had a friend with me. She was furious when she spotted someone parked at the handicap parking space and did not appeared to be so. I had to stop her and explained that not every disability is obvious. I recalled about my teacher who had a parking permit after his spine surgery. Except for walking a little slow, no one could tell that he was handicapped. The poor man was so much in pain by the time he reached the classroom.

I remember that long ago, only the license plates were given to the primary disabled driver of the vehicle. There was no tag. Therefore, no problem with this issue. If the disabled person is riding with someone else, the driver would drop off the disabled person at or nead the entrance. No problem was there neither.

The problem began when the tags were issued. Each disabled person is given 2 permits (in Texas). They're either 2 hanging tags or 1 set of auto license plate + 1 hanging tag. So, many would make a little extra money and sell the extra tag. This is where most problems come from.

I've been approached a few times asking to sell my extra tag. Of course, I refused. Needless to say, I am no longer in contact with those people.

What the system needs to do is stop issuing the tags. All problems will be gone.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2012 at 8:13PM
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Alledebella, in Texas there are 2 different color tags, The red is for temporary and blue for permanent. They all have expiration dates on them. That's not the problem. The problem is when someone is not disabled and was able to obtain the tag from elsewhere other than the authority.

Jay_tn, I have the same problem sometime. What I do when I get into this situation is find the last parking space that is located at one end. That would give me room on the side that I need for wheelchair accessibility.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2012 at 8:21PM
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Early one morning I pulled into a handicapped spot in front of a grocery store. As I got out of my car, a man in another car called out to me "You have to move. That's a handicap spot". I said "I have a hanger. It's right there hanging". It was but I guess he couldn't see it with the sun in his eyes. I was sort of glad he mentioned it. Now that I have my transplant and no longer need those spots, I park far from the store and walk. In my area, handicapped hangers are like a prized possession. People lend and trade them and if an older or disabled person dies, their family decides who "inheirits" the parking hanger. Of course the police can check the hanger number to decide who actually "owns" it. And I do realize it's hard to "judge" by looking if a person is truly handicapped.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2012 at 9:09AM
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My husband was in a wheelchair for the last 5 years of his life. He could walk just a little ways with a walker and with me holding his gait belt. He wanted to get "out" once in a while so I would make the effort to get him down our front steps and into the car, then get the wheelchair down and into the trunk.

It was terribly frustrating to find a Handicapped spot only to find that people had parked grocery carts in it, or to see a pickup truck pull in to a handicapped spot while the owner ran in the store to buy cigarettes or whatever. Sometimes this meant that my husband couldn't get out and of course neither could I.

Many times I silently said "A pox on you inconsiderate boobs!" Or it might have been a bit more salty.

Would that those folks could have "walked in my shoes" for a week or so.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2012 at 11:43AM
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I'm looking at it from a different perspective. I know some chronically ill people (who don't appear ill on the outside) and some of those people do find it hard to get handicap permits.

Although many people with invisible diseases do get permits, some do not...as some of these "diseases" are not always fully recognized or understood by even the medical community. Possibly these co-workers were talking about those people and are not as ignorant as you think.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2012 at 12:28PM
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so sorry you need handicap parking at all...

i havn't applied yet, but know the day is coming, sigh...dh and i have gotten into the "leaving early" habit for places like costco, ect, to get closer spaces...or he'll drop me off...

no one can "see" a bad back or joints that ache with every step, and i hope your co-workers never have to...but just give them one day in that situation!

    Bookmark   September 16, 2012 at 12:52PM
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ravencajun Zone 8b TX

I had to provide an actual prescription from my doctor along with a form he had to fill out to get my permanent placards. And when I moved here I had to do that all over again when it was time to renew since it was a different part of Texas. They do expire they are not forever. I have the blue ones which are for permanent problems. I had the option of 2 placards or the plates for my car. I preferred the placards since we have multiple vehicles and the placards go with me in what ever vehicle I am traveling in. I leave one in my vehicle and the other is usually in my purse so that I can use it when I am with someone or in my husbands vehicle.
Here they had a real problem with the illegal production of fake placards, they are very close to the real thing and that really makes it difficult because it may look like they have a legit hanger when in fact they bought it from some jerk that is making them in his garage or somewhere.

I have had people many times look at me and start talking and I know what the topic is, does she look handicapped to you? That is till about the time my husband opens the back of the vehicle and drags out my wheelchair.
I luckily can walk short distances and often do it with use of my cane. But anything over a short distance and I must be seated.
IT is always frustrating when you know some people just don't get it and really don't care. They park where ever they darn well please.

We never park in the Van accessible places that is also very inconsiderate if you don't need it don't take it.

And another thing for the love of God do not park your car blocking the dadgum curb cuts!!! How the heck do you think we have to get our wheelchairs over the curb?
We came out of Big Lots the other day and there was this woman parked directly over the one curb cut, sitting in the car while it was running, talking on her cell phone totally ignoring the world around her. I stopped right at the side of her car and just stared at her. My husband said are you going to move off of the curb cut? She ignored us and she had her window down! She did NOT move. I had to wheel over to behind her car, step out of my chair while my husband lowered it then get back in, well some people can NOT do that, luckily I can.
Many times I have gone to stores to find a car parked directly smack dab over the big yellow painted curb cuts like it was a legal parking spot.
That is our only access!! Please be courteous how difficult is it to understand that and be aware of the curb cuts. I seriously considered making up notes to put on the cars I find doing it. But that would probably make that kind of person do it more.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2012 at 1:43PM
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The other day I was parking at the chiropractors office. His building is new and there was nobody parked in any of the slots and the handicapped one was farther away from the door. So I parked in a non handicapped space by the door and as I was getting out two guys in their twenties pulled into the handicapped slot, jumped out and went into the office.

By the time I got in there they had been ushered into a room. I asked Stacy, the receptionist which one of those guys was handicapped. She went right into the room and made them move their car.

The nerve of some people, hopefully they will never need a handicapped plate and can't find a place to park. It just frosts me sometimes.

It seems like our town has mostly van accessible parking spaces. Jae, I still remember you telling the story while I was at your house. There was a car with a temp hanger eyeing the van accessible space, you got there first and had your gal back in as quick as she could. Then you commented that a wheelchair trumps a walker. I still smile when I think of it.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2012 at 2:16PM
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Another thing to consider in regards to a seemingly able bodied person parking in a handicapped spot. In most cases, I use a handicapped scooter. But at the grocery store where the grocery carts are right inside the door, my dh lets me out right in front of the door and I go in with just the help of my cane. I can shop while using the cart for support. Dh parks the van in a handicapped parking space and comes into the store to help me. Anyone who didn't see him let me off at the door might question his disability. When I am done shoping, I can use the support of the cart to get to the van that is a short walk to that handicapped space. Dh of course unloads the cart and returns it to the store.

When out and about to places where I must use my scooter, I sometimes feel guilty parking in a handicapped space. After all, I am riding. I feel like those spaces are needed for the handicapped that are struggling to walk, for whatever reason. But as someone mentioned in a previous post, those in chairs are vulnerable, not only because they cannot be seen by drivers backing out of spaces, but also by purse snatchers, etc, who might prey on our vulnerability.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2012 at 2:53PM
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We have become such an unhealthy society, it seems like more people have handicap tags than do not. My opinion as I watch many of these people is that a little bit of exercise wouldn't hurt and if they are so disabled, they shouldn't be driving. I know, I am cold and uncaring and just don't understand - oh well.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2012 at 5:02PM
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Gardnerwannabe, you say you just don't understand. Are you willing to be educated? Or are you just as well satisfied to continue to not understand?

    Bookmark   September 16, 2012 at 5:22PM
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Where I live-- in an Independent Living apartment complex there are many people struggling to stay independent.

Many, if not most, do not drive any more, are well over 80, but need to get out sometimes. Some, no doubt, are in those cars you see but have been let out at the door or simply cannot walk very far.

I would guess that most, if not all, have led healthy lives or they would not have reached advanced age. They simply need some help. I don't really like having so many walkers in our building which used to have very few. But-- I don't want to be evicted if I need one. I try to live and let live.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2012 at 5:36PM
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When my husband went in to the nursing home, I cut up the handicapped hanger and it went in the trash. Thankful to the good Lord that "I" didn't need it!

    Bookmark   September 16, 2012 at 6:03PM
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ravencajun Zone 8b TX

Sorry there's a big difference between uncaring, not understanding and just plain ignorance and rudeness!

I guess you think those who have rheumatoid arthritis so bad they can barely move a joint should just be in the gym lifting weights and jumping rope! And the person who was born with a congenital heart condition well they should be out running track. Oh and the on with MS golly gee why the heck aren't they out on the basketball court playing in a game.
Holy smokes the ignorance of some human beings is astounding.
I would never wish these conditions, or the numerous ones that I have on anyone, but just one day one day to live in the kind of pain and suffering and discomfort that these "people who need a little exercise " have to live with daily and then let's see who the weak one is!

Sorry not my nature to go off but insulting people who are disabled is my fuse.

I need to step away for a while.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 2:24AM
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Thank you, Raven.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 8:23AM
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All we can hope is all that need it get it and those that don't do not take avantage and get it anyway.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 8:42AM
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Good message Raven. My husband had multiple problems. Anyone talking with him, while he was sitting down, would not have seen any of them. He had less than 1/2 his heart working for a long time now, along with other problems. He had a handicapped hanger in his car, and one in the glove compartment of mine. Most of the time, there wasnt a handicapped place to even park, and we would have to leave and try again later. Since we live 26 miles from walmarts, and malls, sometimes, we came home, without getting our shopping done. He passed away the 9th of last month, and I cut up the tags and put them in the trash. Disability is a hard thing to deal with, without people being hateful and rude about it.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 10:04AM
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I get tickled at all the senior citizens in our area who do mall walking for exercise. They all use the handicapped parking spots and then do their walk in the mall. Those parking places could be reserved for someone who is just a little more needy. Also, the reserved for pregnant women parking spaces close to the door at the gym. They have to park close so they can do a gym workout?

    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 10:24AM
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Chemocurl zn5b/6a Indiana

I get tickled at all the senior citizens in our area who do mall walking for exercise. They all use the handicapped parking spots and then do their walk in the mall. Those parking places could be reserved for someone who is just a little more needy.
Are you positive it is the many mall walkers parking in the handicapped?
Are they in pain, or is there any danger of their knee going out?
Do they have heart disease?
How fast are all of those mall walkers walking?
Could they be walking for rehab after surgery or due to a problem?
Are they quite elderly? An elderly friend of mine is 94 and is capable of getting from point A to point B without being in pain, but the way I see it with her is that her reflexes are quite slow, and she wouldn't be able to react quickly enough to go any great distance in a busy lot.

Again...not all handicaps are 'quite visible'.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 10:38AM
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"...a wheelchair trumps a walker..."
Wow. What a (multiple adjectives deleted) position. Probably said by someone who has never relied on use of a walker to get around. I know this is likely to fire people off but IMO, NOPE, not even close to a trump on that one. Quite the opposite AFAIC. Seems like there's some education needed here too! LOL

Say what you will, but someone in a wheelchair is still RIDING, while someone with a walker is often struggling to WALK. Much bigger chance of a slip and fall or something with the walker, or for that matter a cane or two, crutches, or just unstable walking. Many times they're being pushed in the wheelchair too. Someone with problems in their extremities can find it very painful to walk with a walker. Sure, some would suggest that perhaps instead of using a walker they should sit down and ride in a wheelchair. Much easier in many ways. Maybe get an electric one and nobody has to push them and the person in the wheelchair doesn't have to use armstrong power to be mobile. Seldom does someone in a wheelchair have to stop and rest while getting from a parking lot to a building.

I guess peoples' priorities are very different. So be it. But when I'm riding in my vehicle I ALWAYS let a walker go. There's been a number of times it's been raining, cold or whatever and I'll stop to let the person cross to get into the store. If they wave me on or something I usually say, I'm riding or it's warmer in here or not getting wet in here so I can wait. Been some surprised looks but usually get a smile.

Clearly there's differences. There's times when someone, like a friend of mine, is unable to wheel his own wheelchair. He has degenerated shoulders, and can walk with a walker enough to get to the car and to get out and get into the wheelchair if need be. But often when his wife and I went out, we refuse to take a handicapped spot. Especially on a nice day. One of us would push him. We felt it was pretty selfish to take a handicapped spot from someone struggling to get in when he could be wheeled in. He also enjoys getting the fresh air. Not always happens like this but it really made us all feel good to come to the door and someone was using a ("trumped") walker to get in.

I have the utmost empathy for people with any sort of a handicap as long as they deal with it rationally. Where I lose my patience is when people start in that mine is SOOOOO much worse than yours! And FWIW, in my lifetime I've been able to walk, run, jog, etc "normally" but have also had extended periods using crutches, cane, canes, wheelchair and yes, even the vilified walker (and no, not all at the same time so I can speak with experience in all of these mobility modes. OK, rant over.

More and more parking lots have little sidewalk/mini roads between the car lanes so they're safer for pedestrians and people in wheelchairs alike to move about the lot. While there's some validity to the point about vulnerability, again, someone in a wheelchair is less likely to be knocked down and injured than someone standing, using a cane, or someone with a walker. I'd suggest some reconsideration of the priorities on the "trumping" bit.

A parking relate incident to share from a few years back. Was pulling into a (non-handicap) parking spot close to the door a while back and some people pulled up screaming at me because they wanted that parking spot. "WE HAVE AN INFANT!!!!!" Sorry folks, it's not a babymamadrama parking spot. But I said y'know, I have trouble walking but since you have it SO BAD, take the spot. I can manage! And I moved my vehicle. They were so embarrassed they wouldn't take the spot. Couldn't resist telling them across the lot that if they need help carrying things or getting something in the store to let me know. I laughed the rest of the day at the selfish little brats. Sad part is they'll be raising a kid (or more).

Good point about curb cuts but again, why are people so afraid to say something? Assuming that someone would automatically react negatively is one of the big problems in society AFAIC. If you educated them, they might even have a conscience and be more watchful. I highly doubt that the vast majority are intentionally blocking the curb cuts. And if they're parking there, usually it's yellow curbed so if they also run the risk of a ticket. Maybe they're letting someone out, or picking someone out so you could get the handicapped spot.

As a side note, I'm totally amazed that the hypersensitive around here haven't reacted to the terms used here! "Handicapped" is so politically incorrect these days. (It's handi-capable, now. ) Even "disabled" and "disability" are offensive to some. ("Differently abled" and "different abilities".) And deity-of-your-choice help anyone who says "palsy parking" anymore! Some already flaked out over "cripple" too! LOL

    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 1:22PM
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ravencajun Zone 8b TX

I never saw the part you quoted about the wheelchair trumping the walker but I agree with you about the walkers, and canes, etc. I have spent my share of time with my walker and on my better days try to use it and my cane as much as possible.
If I am in my wheelchair I always stop and let anyone with walking issues go ahead because I am sitting and not struggling to walk or stand. The only time I am pushed is if someone insists on doing it, I normally take care of that myself and when I need to rest my arms I stop. All the time that I am sitting my husband is standing and with his knees that in itself is a chore, I would never expect him to also push.
Respect as the song says RESPECT wish there was more of it. LOL

    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 2:02PM
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Gardnerwannabe, it isn't that you're cold or uncaring. It is ignorant on your part. You admitted you're that way but still chose to slam people down. It's plain bullying. I feel sorry for you and hope life will teach you how to be kind to others. Because believe it or not, one day you will need someone to be kind to you.

Here's some education for you whether you want it or not. I've been a disabled driver since I was 18. I have a perfect driving record. I am known as the safest driver among friends & family. It has nothing to do with whether I'm a disabled driver or not.

Have you ever heard of technology? There are specialist shops that modify a vehicle to meet the needs of the disabled driver in order for the driver to drive safely. No, I'm not talking about the lift for the wheelchairs that you often see. I'm talking about the driving unit. Yes, technology plays a big roll in vehicle modification for the disabled driver. State and Federal laws requires that these vehicle have a thorough inspection by auto state inspectors before releasing the vehicle back to the driver. Just as important, we had to be trained to drive with our modified vehicles. Plus, anytime that a major modification was redone with the driving unit, we are required to be retrain and retake our driver's license road test. State and Federal regulations do exists for the disabled drivers but not in a condemning way, instead it is more of an accomodating way.

Do you really think that we, disabled drivers, would be able to obtain a driver's license by the State if we're not fitted to drive safely on the road?

Don't be so judgemental, be educated.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 3:21PM
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ravencajun Zone 8b TX
    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 3:35PM
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Chemocurl, back off. Yes, I know they are mall walkers because I walk with them. We are all there before the mall opens so there are no shoppers and no employees are there. I really don't know what you are trying to say. There are spaces that are 1 and 2 spaces further into the parking lot that they can use. The add'l 2 spaces into the lot is minor. Just saying, by the time they are finished with their walk the mall has opened and sometimes the handicapped spots are filled. Wish some people would not be so defensive. Life isn't about always being right and proving your point. Geez.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 4:05PM
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Chemocurl zn5b/6a Indiana

Yes, I know they are mall walkers because I walk with them.
I'm sorry...I didn't see that in your post. My apologies. I had no idea you were walking with them.

Those parking places could be reserved for someone who is just a little more needy.
Maybe you could suggest that to your walking friends.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 5:19PM
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Just want to chime in here. My Dad was a quadripeligiac for the last 8 yrs. of his life (self-inflicted through stupidity.) My stepmother (bless her soul) took care of him. I have a REEEALLL problem with people without tags parking in a handicapped space!

    Bookmark   September 18, 2012 at 12:57AM
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I am the person quoted about the"wheelchair trumps a walker" comment. I will tell you the whole story and maybe you might understand the reason for the comment.
First of all, Cynic's comment, "Sure, some would suggest that perhaps instead of using a walker they should sit down and ride in a wheelchair. Much easier in many ways. " Oh how nice it would be if it were that simple for me to just get up and try a walker just to get a feel for the difficulty of it! Five years ago I survived a brain aneurysm. After 5 months in the hospital, one of them in ICU, I was released to a world that I no longer fit in. I went from being a 60 yr. old widow who was maintaining the yard work of 3 acres as well as keeping up everything else needed to run the house, to someone totally dependent on paid caregivers to dress me, feed me, and get me in and out of bed, and eventually learn to feed myself, write, etc. with my left hand since my right side is 90% useless. I was deemed clear-minded enough by my insurance company to be able to drive a power chair. I had to buy a specially converted minivan with a ramp that requires having to park in a van accessible space in order for the ramp to go down.
Now for the above referenced comment. My caregiver was waiting for traffic to clear so that she could back into the only available space with the ramp area. There was a truck behind us that expressed their indignation that we took the space that they wanted. They parked across the aisle from us and I saw a relatively young woman, who had a bandaged knee, get out and the driver gave her the walker. I then asked my caregiver to hurry and lower the ramp so I could get out and let them see that we were there out of need for the space with wheelchair access. They did look and their angry faces turned to laughter at what one of them thought was funny. I summed up the situation as "wheelchair trumps walker".
I understand your posts in defense of those having a hard time with a walker. I should wish to have that option, as well as having my old life back, but you deal with what life gives you and that includes me having to fight for a parking space where my ramp can be used.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2012 at 12:48PM
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Well, my post has been up all day and no comment from either ravencajun or cynic, who typed 9 paragraphs blasting me for a comment that was attributed to me by another poster. Neither them, nor anyone else who most likely read my response to them, has chosen to reply. Talk about a thread killer. I will take it that it's my problem to deal with if I can't park in a van accessible space and have to find two regular spaces at the end of the parking lot to lower my ramp.

And to those that were and still are offended by the "trumps" comment, sorry to have offended you but I would probably do it again in a heartbeat to be honest about it. With all due respect to those using a walker.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2012 at 9:48PM
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ROFL, perhaps they don't care to engage in a debation with you Jae_TN. They said what they have to say and leave it as just that.

I am for one, would let the other person has the last saying just to keep the peace. That doesn't mean I'm being a loser but ore as being the bigger person.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2012 at 10:13PM
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ravencajun Zone 8b TX

whoa whoa whoa NO no no not even one bit did I blast you at all I said I had not even seen the comment cynic referred to and I in no way said he was right about what he said.
I too am in a wheelchair and I said I understood what his point was about when we can we should think about the people who are using walkers and struggling to walk. HUGE difference in that and in any way slamming you or putting you down. I would NEVER do that and I really take offense that you took my comments that way because I feel so very very bad that what I said could have hurt your feelings such that you had that comment to me.
Please re read what I said and know that it had absolutely nothing to do with you since I had no idea who had even said the trumps comment.
I have been sick most of the day today and not on the computer much at all so I did miss your reply today sorry it took me this long to reply I would have done it immediately had I seen it earlier.

I would have thought my point was very clear in my earlier post when I went off on disparaging comments that were made about people needing exercise.

I really don't know how my comment was so badly misconstrued but believe me I meant no disrespect, hurt, or anything negative at all.

Having read your post it makes a lot of senses as to the original comment you made. That is one bad thing about the written word we don't hear everything that we do with the spoken word.

Please, my deepest apologies never my intent to in any way be negative. My point was that I did understand his point about some people struggling to walk, I am one of those people, on the bad days I am one of the people in the wheelchair, I see it all the way around that was all I was saying.
I also did say I NEVER park in van spaces ...
So you took nothing positive from anything I said on all of this topic ?
wow I am baffled.

I still have not seen where you ever posted the comment " wheelchair trumps a walker" I have re read every post on here again and again, I don't see it????
Sorry, and very done.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2012 at 10:14PM
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oops, the m is missing. It should have been 'more' :]

    Bookmark   September 18, 2012 at 10:16PM
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Raven, I am the one that mentioned the wheelchair trumps a walker. It was part of the story Jae told Beth and I when we were visiting at her house. I didn't realize that my statement was misunderstood.

I am just now getting back to read this post. Sorry that what I wrote caused this confusion.

I too am handicapped but never use a van accessible space if possible. Here where we live all or most of the handicapped spaces are van accessible.

Again my apologies.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2012 at 10:28PM
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raven, my apologies for including you in my original post. I guess I was so slack-jawed at cynic's rant about me that I read your post the wrong way. I gleaned the slightest hint of support for what he said as being another slam aimed at me. I don't live my life having a pity-party and I hope my post that I made this morning didn't come across that way.

Again, sorry.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2012 at 10:56PM
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I have seen people park in the striped area of the van accessible handicap parking. I kept asking my neighbor if she and her husband would drive up to the space and park partially in the Handicap spot, and put the ramp down behind the car parked in the striped area and leave it there. They never would do it! lol I know I have a sick sense of humor. In the parking areas around here, we generally have a LOT of handicap parking areas. good to see, and very rarely are they full. I never question anyone using the spot.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2012 at 11:33PM
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ravencajun Zone 8b TX

no apologies needed, all good!

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 1:00PM
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"4 women I work with are chatting and gossiping as usual"

"But they are talking like I'm not in the room. I am silent because I don't want to be alienated. I am too emotional to respond"

It sounds like this is not a problem about handicapped parking. You work with a bunch of witches and you are the odd man out. It sounds like a type of bullying that is seen among girls and women called "relational aggression". My daughter went through hell in high school with a situation like this.

Can you talk to your boss or management? You shouldn't have to put up with this kind of workplace environment. You go to work to work, not be harassed.

This is a bunch of hooey, as my mother says and really angers me. You need to get angry too.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 1:42PM
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