It’s a subject I’ve seen raised so many times and each time it really makes my blood boil! I’m talking about the deviants without children that park in parent and child parking bays.

Parent and child car parking spaces are for parents with children. These spaces are generally not policed but recently in the news a pregnant lady using a parent and child space was fined as she did not have a child. This was eventually overturned but it raises the question, who should be entitled to park in these spaces?

It seems to me that in most cases the bays are not monitored and I know as I’ve seen first hand people without children park in them, while at the same time, I’m nearby struggling to get my two children out of the car doors in a regular parking space. It seems some feel that due to the fact these spaces are close to the store and badges are not required (as in the case of a disabled driver) they are convenient and free for all to use.

Only recently I was searching for a parent and child space in the car park of a certain large retailer, only to find a member of staff parked in a parent and child bay. Not the first time either. I was so irked, I actually took the time to report this to the store but the next week when I returned to do my weekly shop, his car was parked back in a parent and child space, yet again.

Personally, I really wish these corporations would simply move the parent and child bays further away from the front of a supermarket, or further back from the doors to the shops in multi-story car parks. I don’t think such close proximity (within reason) to the store is really necessary, it’s more about having adequate room to safely get your children in and out of a car.

Legally, the use of parking bays in a privately owned car park is a matter of contract law, created by the signs in the car park, so it seems there really is little one can do, but vent their frustrations as best they can. In my opinion these spaces should only be used by parents with children using car seats. Older children should be perfectly able to get themselves in and out of a car on their own. Heavily pregnant women should also be entitled to park in these bays without question! As all us mothers know once you get past around the seven month mark, getting in and out of bed is difficult let alone getting in and out of a car in a tight space!

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  1. Katherine

    Have you considered that maybe the spaces are being used by those with invisible disabilities when the disabled bays are full?
    Maybe there’s no car seat in the car as the parent has taken their newborn into the shop?
    Maybe that employee that’s parking in one of the spaces has an agreement with their employer and occupational health to allow them to park there because of chronic pain or mobility issues?
    I wish people would stop being so judgey judgey all the time about this (I regularly see posts in parenting groups).
    Sure there are people who abuse them, but for many they use them out of necessity – so until you know someone’s full story, maybe the judging should be put on hold.
    Parent and child spaces are a recent thing, so just be grateful when they exist and if there’s one free. If not, get on with life. There’s no legal obligation for any car park to provide them in the first place.

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