Monday, June 3, 2013

The abuse of the handicap pass!

I'm sure you've all heard the stories in the media lately. First it was the story of rich Manhattan mommies hiring disabled people as tour guides at Disney World to get the on the rides faster with their handicap pass.

Then just the other day Rosen did a report on the Today show where they went undercover and hired supposed disabled people to get them on the rides faster at Disneyland.

Every time I think of this it has me fuming! Some people said hey, disabled people can make good money doing this! For me its, hey, lets teach disabled people that its ok to lie and cheat! Ya, thats a great idea!
The other problem with that, is look at the two people hired by Rosen to use their pass....both of them were themselves lying about being disabled! One guy wouldn't even say his disability, the other said it was her back and knees. So her back and knees were so bad that she can't stand in line, but she can walk the entire park, and go on jerky rides! Sorry as I roll my eyes to that one!

As frequent visitors to Disneyland, we've noticed the abuse grow to a disgusting level! Right now the big excuse is Autism. Because Disney is not allowed to make your prove your disability, autism is a great excuse because you can't physically see that a person has it. I watch everyday perfectly healthy adults and children walk right on with a handicap pass. And actually, if you walk into Disney and say you need a pass because you have a child with Down syndrome, you need something more to get the pass. Just having  DS alone doesn't get you a pass, as it shouldn't. Arina doesn't need a handicap pass. Is she good in lines? No, not many toddlers and preschoolers that I know enjoy standing in a long line. If your child has major sensory issues or can't walk yet at the age a child typically walks then yes, a handicap pass is needed.

Let me tell you how glamorous it really is to have a truly disabled child and actually need the pass for what its meant for!
It means actually waiting longer for many rides because we have to wait for a special handicap vehicle.
In rides that we have to transfer it means unhooking and carrying a feeding pump, oxygen, and 25lb dead weight child onto the ride.
It takes us longer to get on and off every ride. It takes longer to get us settled on the tram, because we have to tie down Jax chair for safety reasons.

I wouldn't change a single thing about Jax. We love every little bit of his gorgeous self! But caring for him is indeed a lot of work!
We do this because Disneyland is a magical place for us. Its a place where Jax can forget about the pain of having multiple medical issues. It makes him smile and it makes us smile! For us its definitely the Happiest place on earth!

 Watching Arina and her secret "thing" that her and the characters have. Because Arina is a kiss blower, now the characters will blow her a kiss, and when she blows one back they catch it! Its priceless!

I can only hope that in the future Disney changes their policies, requiring documentation to prove your disability. I hear that its coming, and if you watch the Today show clip, Disney is not tolerating this abuse of the handicap pass! I would love to see that cocky idiot's face when his handicap pass, and possibly even his annual pass is taken away because of his stupidity!
I mean come on people, be thankful for yours and your children's health! We'd give anything to not need the handicap pass! We'd give anything for Jax to be able to run and play with his little sister! But he can't!

Until then, if people think its so glamorous to get a handicap pass, we'll let them hire Jax as their "tour guide". We'll see how long it is before they bring him back and say, this is too much work, its not worth it!


Buckles Family said...

I completely agree 100%! My daughter has a spinal cord injury, and I would give up every pass/special access we have in order for her to be able to even just walk. I would stand in line for a year if it meant she was standing next to me. I am disgusted by people who take advantage of the system and don't even feel bad about it. Let them deal with all of the equipment and medical issues for one day and see if they feel the same way.

Jen Paris said...

I love this post Lacey!

The VW's said...

Love those pics of Arina's princesses showing her love! And, it really makes me mad when people abuse handicap's definitely not a glamorous life to have to live!

Sleepless In St. George said...

I have seen the abuse too...I saw three teenage girls with a wheelchair, the ones you rent at disney, one girl was in the chair. A half hour later I saw them again and one of her friends was in it this time and she was pushing it! Seriously? I looked for this past weekend while we were there, I was hoping to meet you in person! (I emailed you once about my teenage girl that volunteers weekly with a girl with cerebral palsy.)

Lacey said...

Dang! You should have reminded me you were coming! We were there Saturday! We spent most of the day at California adventure. I see teenagers all the time abusing it, it makes me sick!

Kristin said...


EDS Warrior said...

I saw this happening when I was there at Christmas.

I don't have a problem with letting the make a wish kids go straight to the front of the line nor do I have a problem with truly disabled children like Jax having access to passes.

But coming all the way from Australia only to have a bunch of teenagers who clearly aren't disabled in any form abuse the pass and make me wait longer made me saw red.

As for those 2 "Disabled Disney Guides" - I hope they get banned from the park. The sooner Disney brings in policy that means bringing in proof of disability the better.


Elaine said...

I see it all the time, not just at amusement parks, either. People use their grandparents' handicap placard on their car so they can get the closest spots in the parking lot; parents avoid talking to their children about disability and teach their children that it is okay to stare at us (I am visually impaired and use a long cane for mobility) and make assumptions. People see the passes as "the easy way out" or a "privilege". Since when is having a disability a "privilege"?

Addie Talley, Photographer said...

awww - sweetest pictures ever!

I cant believe people are so senseless and careless... oh wait, yes I can... people treat our son (who has DS and other medical needs) like he doesnt even matter... its so sad how people are sometimes