Disabled Parking Access; Obama and Willie Mays; California Democratic Party …

by on July 24, 2009

To the Editor:

I agree with requiring disabled placard holders to pay. If you can’t even ride MUNI for free, why should you be able to park for free? The ADA is about access, not a free lunch.

Also, if everyone now has to pay, isn’t a sign of adequate size showing the rates a sufficient notice since everyone is required to read it? And on that very subject, if you can’t read that sign, how does the disabled person have sufficient vision to drive in the first place?

Alexis Woo

To the Editor:

Let’s talk about the word accommodation. Let’s look at why we give people with qualifying disabilities placards and free parking in the first place. Let’s talk about what it means to be unable to take public transit. Let’s talk about buses whose lifts are out of order, muffled and broken audio stop announcement systems, and the bad attitudes of everyone around when someone with a disability wants to be mobile and use public facilities. Let’s talk about caregivers who have to take their loved ones with severe disabilities from Adult Day Health care to the post office to a doctor’s appointment and to the Social Security office.

These are some of the impacts that are the functional limitations that inherently define disability. If all of these public places were actually accessible, no accommodations would be needed. But they are not, and so the state of California accommodates people with disabilities for whom public transit is unsafe or unrealistic with free parking placards. Looking at penalizing those who use placards to gain equal access to the services and businesses within this city is completely against the spirit of the ADA and ethically abhorrent.

Carleigh Kude

To the Editor:

The root of the problem is the misuse of privileges that result in the lack of turnover of parking spaces, not specifically the financial implications. If people with disabilities are to gain from reform, it should also include accountability of physicians who sign off on placard applications.

The other serious flaw with the current policy is that one can park with a placard for an unlimited period of time, which under the law can be interpreted to mean days at a time. Why not consider keeping the policy of free parking, but with some sort of perimeters for time limits? For example, if you have a placard you might be well be accommodated by parking free – but be allowed to park up to 4 hours in a two hour zone. That would be a disincentive for abuse and place no burden of paying for parking with a placard.

Don Norte

To the Editor:

Thank You for Rochelle Metcalfe’s very good article this week. I felt proud while reading, it was a good feeling seeing our President Obama walking with Willie Mays. I remember Willie when I was a kid, and he lived next door to my grandmother.

What a great article. It made you think of the old days, and the present and the future. It is exciting to hear about our President, and what a wonderful family man he is. Thank you for the interesting article.

Sandra Abraham

To the Editor:

I attended the state Democratic Party’s Executive Board this weekend, and it was a breath of fresh air. Our own Hilary Crosby, the grassroots choice for Controller, was on the dais; she’s instituted a finance boot camp for us to learn how to handle money, get it and use it, and report it properly. Grassroots leaders are now in leadership positions. John Burton is listening, and is leading. His call to action on NO offshore oil drilling to the delegates was strong and compelling. Finally! A Democrat with spine.

Dotty LeMieux

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Filed under: Letters to the Editor