Handicapped parking is at a premium, especially in highly-populated, urban cities. South Carolina is among several states that have changed the regulations for obtaining a parking placard. As of January 1, 2013, all South Carolinians who have the handicapped placards must have a photo of the individual with the disability on the placards. Photos will serve as verification and should curb the abuse of using someone else’s placard. The PhotoVoice Project is credited, in part, to the passage of the new legislation.
In addition to adding photos, the parking fine has increased. Instead of a minimum ticket of $500, the payout is a minimum of $1000. However, these new regulations will only be effective if the law is enforced. Since it’s only been about two months since everyone was required to have the new placards, I’m not sure if there has been a decrease in parking violations. It will be interesting to see if positive changes will occur since the new regulations have been established.
Medical professionals also have stricter guidelines to follow when approving someone with a placard or license plate. They must provide a prescription in addition to the required DMV form. Even with these modifications, accessible parking may continue to be an issue in society. There is already a high demand for these spots, and I don’t think the issue will be completely resolved until more handicapped spaces are created.
With the advancements in technology, individuals are taking the power of parking management into their own hands. Parking Mobility and Handicapped Fraud are among the many apps and websites allowing consumers to report parking violators. While I haven’t tried these apps, it’s proving that consumers are in the driver’s seat when it comes to enforcing the law.
Do you think photos on handicapped placards will improve the parking situation?