Once again, the State of Florida is looking to crack down on landlord and clients who are trying to abuse the laws regarding emotional support animals.
People are “getting phony baloney psychological papers saying they’re allowed to have animals in their communities,” Sen. Kevin Rader (D-29th District) said. “You can go online right now and for … less than $100 get a certificate for an emotional support animal.”
We concur with Rep. Rader, as there’s way too much fraud in this business. As we’ve been saying for years, it’s just bogus. Most of the ESA products found online are simply junk. And it’s really frustrating to complying ethically and legally with Federal and state regulations, only to have some fellow working out of the back of a UPS Store game the system.
Florida’s senate just passed a bill forbidding landlords from discriminating against people who require emotional support animals, but allows them to request proof of a person’s disability if it isn’t obvious.
It also targets people who pretend to need one.
If Senate Bill 1084 becomes law, anyone who falsifies information or misrepresents their need for a support animal can spend up to 60 days in jail.
Good deal, we say, on both counts, and we rise up in strong support of Florida’s proposed new guidelines.
Chaz Stevens is an entrepreneur, former journalist, and well-known activist who has appeared on the front pages of Time, Miami Herald, Guardian, Slate, and the Huffington Post. He’s also appeared on The Daily Show, the Colbert Report, and Fox News.
Chaz lives in South Florida with his two rescue dogs. Before launching ESAD International, he could be found working on IT for IBM, Microsoft, and The Walt Disney World Company. But his favorite job is the one he’s now doing full time — helping people get to a better place.