Snapshot Of 'Lazy' Cops Sparks Outrage
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
June 27, 2005
STOCKTON, ENGLAND--The quick thinking of a concerned citizen has led to formal reprimands for two Cleveland Police officers who parked a van in a zone designated for motorists with disabilities, while they shopped for cell phones.
The unnamed citizen snapped a photograph, published later by the Evening Gazette, which showed the unidentified officers parking in the clearly marked zone, even though there plenty of other empty spaces nearby. The June 6 incident sparked outrage from disability groups, particularly the Disabled Drivers' Association, which has been campaigning for stronger enforcement of laws protecting such parking spaces.
"Unless there was a justifiable operational need for them to use that space, then it is an absolute disgrace. It sets a bad example to every other motorist who may be led to thinking it is okay to use disabled parking facilities," said Douglas Campbell, executive director of the Disabled Drivers' Association.
"It is just laziness . . . Disabled people are given blue badges because without them they lose their independence."
The BBC reported on June 21 that the two officers were finally given written reprimands for unprofessional behavior.
"Parking offence" (Evening Gazette)
"'Lazy' cops face action" (Evening Gazette)
"Disabled bay officers reprimanded"