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Campaign to free up handicap parking spaces

Parking is a concern throughout Grand Cayman and parking for the handicap is even more scarce on island. But Rotary Central is launching a new campaign called “Not Your Spot, aimed at stopping people from parking in disabled spots. Raymond Cieto said he feels he’s lucky to find a disabled parking spot at Kirk’s where he shops for groceries.
“One time I didn’t find it,” said Mr. Cieto. He says that time was particularly difficult for him. You see Mr. Cieto is confined to a wheelchair and like many other disabled individuals he depends on disabled parking spots to make every day travel easier.

“They have to take the wheelchair out of the side of the vehicle which is why the hash lines are for. They need a wider space than the rest of us. And they need to be nearer to the actual building,” said Rotary Central President Susan Bodden.

Rotary Central is kicking off the “Not Your Spot” national campaign to free up more of those spots for the disabled. Ms. Bodden said they want to stop those who are not disabled from parking in those designated spots. “Most people are parking there because they think it’s only for a few minutes. And they are just popping into the bank or just popping into shops. But it’s not ok.It’s illlegal. Even if it’s for one minute. It’s illegal. In that one minute if one of our families arrives their day is ruined they have to go home,” said Ms. Bodden.

Only people with a blue handicap parking tag or disability registration plates can park in the spots. F-s plates only apply to specific vehicles. While tags are assigned to people with disabilities. Applicants are required to have a disability assessment done by a licensed physician in the Cayman Island. But a temporary disability may be enough to qualify a person to receive a tag. Ms. Bodden said, “If I broke my leg. I would be entitled to get a temporary blue badge and I would be able to park in that space.”

Rotary Central is not only encouraging people to stop parking in the spaces, but to also report those who are illegally parking in disabled spots. There’s a $100 fine for those who are caught breaking the law. To see if you qualify for a blue handicap parking badge or disability plates, you should contact the Cayman Islands Department of Vehicle and Driver’s Licensing.

About the author

Reshma Ragoonath

Reshma Ragoonath

Reshma Ragoonath is a Trinidadian journalist with 16 years media experience with a strong background in print with her most recent stint at The Cayman Reporter. She has a BA in Mass Communications, as well as, an Associate degree in Journalism and Public Relations.

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