'Granny McNasty' writes own parking tickets
Published Friday, April 22, 2011 5:10PM PDT
A Victoria grandmother is so sick of people parking in disabled spaces that she's taking matters into her own hands.
Audrey Scammell, 77, says she's "ticked off" about lack of enforcement of parking cheats that she's writing her own parking tickets and placing them on the dashboards of offenders.
"The worst offenders are these guys in great big honking trucks, they run into the store, and while they're gone, I slip them my own special parking tickets, my own homemade ones," Scammell told CTV News.
The ticket reads, "Are you handicapped? Do you have a handicapped sticker? If so, use it! If not, your only handicap is being mentally handicapped. P.S.: I ‘accidentally' scratched your vehicle with my wheelchair."
Scammell says her efforts – and her caustic tone -- have earned her the nickname "Granny McNasty" from her family – and she's proud of it.
"They call me Granny McNasty because I do stuff like this. I stick up for the underdog all the time," she said.
Disabled advocacy groups warn against using the word "handicapped" and prefer the word "disabled".
Scammell was reacting to a CTV News investigation that caught parking cheats in the act – and showed holes in enforcing the rules.
While disabled spots on public roadways are often monitored by city parking officers, they are only the minority – the vast majority of parking spots are on private property, and are rarely enforced.
The provincial government said it has no jurisdiction over privately owned spots – even though it's provincial legislation that creates the blue wheelchair markers that indicate someone is disabled.
And city representatives said their officers can't go on private property, calling instead of landlords of the privately owned lots to ticket their customers' vehicles.
The city of Vancouver bylaw refers to the number and size and position of the disabled spots on private lots, but does not say their use should be policed by the landowner.
And even if the city did try to crack down, the only way they could get businesses to comply would be a business licence hearing, which is slow and expensive, representatives say.
Scammell says the disabled parking ticket is just one of a series of tickets she has. Another, for people who sandwich her in, she writes, "Thanks for parking so close. Next time leave a…can opener so I can get my car out. A--holes like you should take the bus."
With a report from CTV British Columbia's Jon Woodward