Handicap Parking and Bathroom Etiquette
I've said a lot of not very nice things, in the privacy of my own car, about folks who don't have a handicap/disabled permit parking in the handicap/disabled spots. I have never parked in one and I cannot imagine ever doing so, for any reason.
Did you know there's a Parking Bog? I didn't until I stumbled across this idea on PT's Parking Blog. I'm not sure Jim's idea will really embarrass folks and I'm not sure his tactic will work, but it's worth a shot.
Jim Watts at the City of Whistler, BC, has come up with a way to begin to "embarrass" handicapped parking violators into compliance, if that's possible.
One prominent member of the community was upset because she was issued a citation for parking in a handicapped stall. He tried to explain that they had a zero tolerance approach and got nowhere. "I was only there for five minutes, etc" He was surprised that the person wasn't embarrassed for taking the space.
Frankly I'm not. Many people can't see beyond the end of their nose. They have no clue what the handicapped go through and are so self centered its impossible for them to comprehend the problem. Its not that we are feeling 'sorry' for the handicapped, although in some cases that may be part of it. Its that we are assisting them with "access" so they can go about their business.
Not all disabled people are in favor of handicap parking as this post shows. Have you ever parked in a handicap parking spot illegally? If you're disabled and own one of these permits, how do you feel about folks who park illegally in them?
Now to what inspired this entire post - handicap stall etiquette. I may not park in handicap/disabled parking spaces but when it comes to using the handicap/disabled restroom stall I only hesitate if I actually see someone who I think may not be able to manage the regular stalls.
Carmen at Mom to the Screaming Masses posted "courtesy in the bathroom" and that's what got me thinking about this. Blame her and be sure to read the comments while you are there!
I wouldn't say that the disabled woman was out of line for wanting to have the stall available for her use. It is reserved - although, maybe not reserved, but appropriated - for those who struggle with the regular stall. BUT. I just said that up above, I struggle with the regular stall. And, then, why should the disabled woman expect that she would never have to wait in a bathroom? Everyone waits at one point in time or another. Should she have to wait, just because I need more room? Or should everyone avoid those stalls, much as we do the parking spots? I'm conflicted. Surprise! I don't know WHAT to think!
Did click over to her post and see that part in her post about "going to the bathroom with kids being a disability"? What do you think about THAT?
There are an awful lot of blog posts (and comments) about this topic. Click here for an example.
Then check out washroom disabled and again don't miss the comments.
A couple of days ago, new signs appeared on the doors of some of the handicapped washrooms in the Toronto CBC building:
This room is reserved for the use of staff and visitors with physical disabilities.
â€œHuh?â€ I thought to myself, â€œONLY people with disabilities?â€ Not that I have strong feelings about the matter, but Iâ€™ve never heard of these washrooms being off-limits to the able bodied. And what prompted the signage? Were there complaints from people with disabilities who had to wait while the able-bodied used their johns? Is it poor form to use them at all? Or does our property manager just want to cut back on cleaning? I resolved to find out.
This appears to be a pretty big topic, with women in particular. What are your thoughts on using the handicap/disabled facilities without a disability or handicap? If you're disabled and have had to wait for a stall, how do you feel? Is there a solution to all of this bathroom angst?