Able-Bodied People Continue to Break Laws Despite Signs, Warnings


Camille Rivera

Handicap parking spaces are necessary for transporting students with disabilities into and out of the school.

Camille Rivera, Reporter

Rebecca Veroneau’s life academic classroom is across from the handicap parking which she uses to assist her students. Over the years she has noticed people without handicap parking taking up the spaces that are there to assist her classroom.

Handicap parking is an accessibility requirement to those who need the extra assistance in society. The rule is often taken advantage of and overlooked.

“Now if a person in a wheelchair needs to go to their car for work skills they have to be assisted down the hill,” Veroneau said. “This infringes on their time and takes multiple teachers to assist the student as well. Anytime I’d see it I would call.”

Veroneau reports parking violations to Principal Joey McQueen.

 “It is against the law to park in handicap parking, and that fact should be known,” McQueen said.

One mother of a student in a wheelchair needs to park in the handicapped parking space closest to Veroneau’s classroom to pick up her daughter from school. Multiple times, the spaces have been filled by people without permission.

“I guess it never dawned on them that we could have to carry her out because the wheelchair had a broken break, so if  we were on the hill trying to transport her, she would go rolling down the hill,” Veroneau said.  

Veroneau wants to remind people to understand the situation from the point of view of a person with disabilities. 

“Transporting her in the rain, all of the hardships that were related to her disability, could have been avoided just by non-disabled people not taking those spots,” Veroneau said. 

Last year a father with a disability would park in the disabled parking lot to pick up his student without a disability. Veroneau said in situations like these, since the person with the disability is not getting out of the car, he should pick up his student regularly by waiting in line. During dismissal these parking spots are needed for students with disabilities needing to leave the school.

Another rule often overlooked is that cars need to stop for the bus for students with disabilities at the front of the school when the stop sign is out. 

“When the bus stops, the red flashing signs prohibit cars from going around the bus for the safety of the student,” Veroneau said. “Cars would go around the bus, so this very kind and diplomatic lady kindly went up to the parent to tell her it’s illegal to go around the school buses and the parent looked at her and said “whatever” with a RUDE attitude.  I wouldn’t have been as nice.” 

Veroneau wants to remind people that it’s dangerous and insensitive not to follow the laws for people with disabilities.

“I always say we are one car crash, one seizure, or heart attack away from being disabled, so why is there so much hate and hostility towards those that are disabled,” she said.