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Don’t do it | Army of volunteers issuing citations for handicap parking spot violators

HOUSTON — Drivers who use handicapped parking spaces who aren’t disabled better think twice the next time they decide to park their cars in one of the spots.

The city of Houston has an army of volunteers looking for violators.

The volunteers are ready to make you pay big bucks if you get caught.

On a rainy day, the most coveted spots in any parking lot are the ones closest to the front door. You would think that most drivers know the marked handicapped spaces are reserved for people who need them.

“Parking in it for just a minute is hurting someone else,” Maria Irshad said.

Irshad, who’s a director with Park Houston, said with only 35 compliance officers it’s hard to catch all the violators.

“When someone parks at a space without that placard, they think it’s just a minute. You know, ‘I’m just going in. I’m going to go to the ATM for just a minute. I’m just going to be in and out real fast,’ but what they don’t realize is that there’s limited spaces and someone who really needs that space comes along and they don’t have access to it,” Irshad said.

The city has a secret weapon.

More than 400 people make up the Disabled Parking Volunteer Program. They’ve been trained and are authorized to issue parking citations to cars that are parked in handicapped spaces without a visible handicap placard.

“They will take their ticket book out with them when maybe they’re at the grocery store or when they’re out shopping, just running errands and if they find someone in violation they’ll give them a citation,” Irshad said.

The volunteers are also making sure the hatched-off accessible aisle is clear.

Last year, they issued more than 9,800 parking citations, each one costing drivers $500 bucks.

Irshad said, that to the volunteers, catching able drivers abusing disabled spots is near and dear to their hearts.

“They do it on their own time. A lot of them have a personal stake in accessible parking. It may be someone in their family. It may be themselves that need the parking space,” Irshad said.

The city is now recruiting more volunteers to join the program. They’re hosting training sessions twice a month.

Source Credit: Houston KHOU-11
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Accessible Parking Coalition Publishes Free, 24-page Guide to Address Growing Challenges of Parking for People with Disabilities

ALEXANDRIA, VA — Making parking accessible for people with mobility disabilities, deterring and detecting disabled placard/plate abuse, and complying with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards have been complex issues for a long time—and the challenges are growing more complicated with an aging population.

A new, downloadable, 24-page guide, “Let’s Make Accessible Parking More Accessible: A Practical Guide to Addressing Disabled Placard Abuse and Other Parking Issues for People with Disabilities,” offered at no charge by the International Parking & Mobility Institute (IPMI)-led Accessible Parking Coalition, provides a roadmap for parking and mobility professionals, elected officials, urban planners and other decision-makers.

Source Credit: Accessible Parking Coalition
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DOWNLOAD: Accessible Parking Coalition Publishes Free, 24-page Guide to Address Growing Challenges of Parking for People with Disabilities
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Save My Spot Video

A wheelchair accessible vehicle is meant to provide freedom, but that can’t happen if it’s been blocked by careless parking. BraunAbility wants to educate the world on responsible parking around wheelchair accessible spaces – and with your help, we’ll make it a reality! Share our video to your friends and ask that they share as well. Together we can make it happen! ‪#savemyspot

Source Credit: BraunAbility
View Online: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MZlHHBozUBc&t=21s

DOWNLOAD: Save My Spot Video

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Stay in the Lines Coloring Page!

At the Southlake DPS, we try to avoid snark and sass (we REALLY do 😉), but sometimes our fair citizens make it hard. Please stay in the lines when you park ESPECIALLY if it’s next to a handicapped spot or you might be the recipient of one of our new fliers. Be kind and drive kind and park kind! Let this graphic be an attention grabbing example so we don’t have to end up going to FedEx Kinko’s and making like thousands of copies of these.

Source Credit: Southlake DPS

DOWNLOAD: Stay in the Lines Coloring Page!

 

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2019-07-26T16:20:41+00:00Categories: .jpg, Parking Enforcers/Legislators, Photo/Art|

Semi-Annual Reminder RE: Disabled Parking Space Use–Sign

We use this sign in conjunction with periodic campus-wide campaigns to help educate about the need to save accessible parking spaces for customers authorized to use them. They are also placed in key areas in advance of enforcement events where we partner with campus police to target. We send a campus-wide message to the campus community to help raise awareness.

Source Credit: Texas A&M University Transportation Services

DOWNLOAD: Semi-Annual Reminder RE: Disabled Parking Space Use–Sign
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Semi-Annual Reminder RE: Disabled Parking Space Use–Notice

We send this notice campus-wide twice per year to help educate about the need to save accessible parking spaces for customers authorized to use them. At times, we send it in advance of enforcement events where we partner with campus police to target enforcement in areas that tend to be more problematic. We also deploy temporary signs moved from area to area to help raise awareness.

 

Source Credit: Texas A&M University Transportation Services

DOWNLOAD: Semi-Annual Reminder RE: Disabled Parking Space Use–Notice
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Contact your Regional ADA Center

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) National Network consists of 10 regional ADA Centers and an ADA Knowledge Translation Center. The regional ADA Centers are distributed throughout the United States to provide local assistance and foster implementation of the ADA. Find the ADA Center that serves your State by visiting the ADA website and clicking on the map https://adata.org/find-your-region

Source Credit: The ADA National Network
View Online: Contact your Regional ADA Center

DOWNLOAD: Regional ADA Offices
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2018-08-24T02:53:43+00:00Categories: .pdf, Accessible Parking Users/Advocates|

AAMVA Best Practices Guide in Deterring and Detecting Fraud and Misuse

The Best Practices Guide assists motor vehicle departments in improving the issuance of disability placards and plates, the deterrence and detection of fraud in these areas, and the enforcement of disability parking violations. The intent is not to identify the one approach that all jurisdictions should follow but rather to serve as a starting point for an informed local discussion on how best to marry needs for accessible parking with needs for general parking. 

The Best Practices Guide provides guidance in the following areas; Fraud identification, issuance and renewal processes, product standards, medical issues and requirements, outreach and education, enforcement strategies, and legislation, case law, and legal challenges.

This publication resulted from a cooperative agreement between the U.S. Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), and the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators (AAMVA).

Source Credit: AAMVA

DOWNLOAD: Best Practices in Deterring and Detecting Fraud and Misuse Resource
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Accessible Parking Etiquette

The ability to safely park at one’s destination is an important component of community participation for people with disabilities. With the proper permit, people with disabilities should be able to use accessible parking spaces in public parking lots. However, a lot of people with disabilities have encountered barriers to parking.

Source Credit: University of Kansas Research and Training Center on Independent Living
This brochure is made possible by a grant from the Dole Institute of Politics, with funding from the General Electric Company.
Endorsed by the Kansas Commission on Disability Concerns and the Kansas Association of Centers for Independent Living. View Online: Accessible Parking Etiquette

DOWNLOAD: Accessible Parking Etiquette
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