I am one of those people who have to use a wheelchair. I cannot recount the times I have tried to find parking only to see all the spaces used and, on inspection, do not see the parking permit displayed.
I have also seen people parking in disabled spaces and I would be confounded as to what condition they have that requires a permit, in particular when you see them return to their cars fully laden with shopping from the top fashion shops.
I have not been able to get a place for hospital visits and have had to be dropped off on the road with my chair in order to attend outpatient clinics and I am not the only one who has had to do this.
I have never seen any car clamped or driver challenged over whether the permit shown is for them or the passenger. My daughter does my driving for me and is very clear about whether my permit can be used or not -- if I am not in the car she must not park in the disabled space.
I have complained to those who stand around wearing high-visibility vests identifying them as 'security' guards. I have always been met with a shrug of the shoulders or a cursory glance at front of the car or a quick about-turn and walk away.
I would gladly trade my chair for the ability to walk and do all the things I used to love doing (I am only in my late 50s), and burn my parking permit.
One final point. During the heavy snow we had in December, I was not able to park in the disabled parking spaces as the people who cleared the snow pushed the snow into the disabled parking spaces. This highlights one of the fundamental problems with disabled parking. Some people just could not care less.
TALLAGHT, DUBLIN 24