Today I was confronted with a most indignant creature who, when informed by a member of staff that she was parked illegally in a blue badge space claimed that she ‘had a badge in the car’.
When informed that no, her car had been checked and there was no badge on display she claimed she would move it, after putting in her three children’s food order.
Another member of staff and I got chatting about parking and the issues faced by disabled customers, much to the individuals indignation (WE were in the wrong, apparently).
I figured a few myths needed debunking. Hope you’re sitting comfortably, this could get complicated...
1. Its OK to park in a blue badge space if you’re only going to be a few minutes
Wrong. It does not matter how long you are going to be.
Disabilities tend to be constant, they don’t run on timings. Don’t do it.
2. This was the only space left
You’d best find a space further away then.
Many people can’t walk, and those spaces are for them, not people too lazy to walk a few metres further.
3. I’ve got my 2/3/4… kids with me
Congratulation on having healthy children; make damn sure that you treasure every moment.
My boy isn’t so lucky, he fights for life daily, needs a wheelchair and all he asks is that you respect his needs.
Your children are capable of walking; no blue badge means the disabled spaces are not for you.
4. It’s not like there was someone in a wheelchair WAITING for that space
Great, you got x-ray vision! Now that I’ve stopped laughing at your utter stupidity… Are you seriously telling me you know what the person behind you needs?!
The happy little girl in the car a few back in the queue could be waiting for a transplant; the driver of another could be an amputee driving an adapted vehicle.
Not all disabilities are visible. Idiot.
It’s simple; if you have a valid blue badge then you can park in the disabled spaces. They are not ‘parent and child’ spaces, nor a convenience.
For many they are essential, without the additional space they provide you can’t get a wheelchair out of some vehicles, and there are usually a handful compared to the many other parking spaces.
Disability isn’t an exclusive club. Anyone could find themselves suddenly forced to join, after all I wasn’t always classed as disabled.
It could be your child sobbing in their wheelchair because a promised visit to McDonalds had to be aborted due to some selfish individual stealing (yes, STEALING) that final, precious accessible space.
Show some consideration, don’t be an asshole, leave the disabled parking spaces for those who need them.