In case you missed it, a few months back my life long dream of catching a police car parked in a handicapped parking zone came true: it wouldn’t have been so funny if it wasn’t so sad and absurd at the same time.
Absurdity has struck again in London, as yesterday on my walk to work I snapped this gem with my iPhone: a London Parks and Rec truck parked in the same handicapped parking spot as the police officer a few months ago.
Yikes, that doesn’t really send the right message to the public, does it Parks and Rec?
It shouldn’t need to be said, but apparently does, that these accessible spots are designated ONLY for people who have accessible parking permits. The reason for this is because some people, particularly those with physical limitations, aren’t able to walk across large parking lots and require the closer space. For me, accessible spaces are important because they provide me a large enough space to safely deploy my lift so I can get out of the vehicle. These spots are not about convenience or privilege–without accessible parking spots we could not drive ourselves and we all know the LTC (and by extension, Paratransit) aren’t getting us anywhere. It should also be noted that leaving accessible spaces isn’t just a nice thing to do–parking in one without a visible permit could cost you over $300 in fines.
Aside from the fact that this individual has broken the law while representing the City, and will possibly be receiving a large fine for his or her ignorance, I think there is more to this story. In fact, I think this photo is a perfect metaphor to express how disability and accessibility is thought about by leaders in London–their unawareness of our needs is literally blocking us from accessing the city.