An Irish mum has embarked on a mission to enforce the rules surrounding parent and child car parking spaces.
In a bid to get shops to impose stricter rules, Niamh O’Reilly set up a change.org petition to outline her argument.
‘As a new mum, I use the parent and child car parking spaces provided by Irish retailers and supermarkets on an almost daily basis,’ she begins.
‘These spaces are not a mere convenience for most parents or guardians, they are a necessity when getting a baby or small children in and out of car seats, as well as prams, changing bags and of course shopping. All of this is practically impossible to do in a regular sized space, which is why the larger parent & child spaces are so invaluable.’
Niamh goes on to state how many members of the general public abuse the system by parking in the bays, despite having no children.
‘On a daily basis, drivers with no children on board thoughtlessly park in these spaces often leaving a parent or guardian with a baby or small children in the car left with no option but to park in a regular sized space further away from the door,’ she continues.
‘Shopping with babies and small children is hard enough without having to try and manoeuvre them, their prams, equipment and the shopping in a car in a tiny parking space.’
Niamh then details how she’s already approached leading supermarkets about the issue, stating that she unsatisfied by their response.
‘I’ve asked all the major Irish retailers to address this, however they tell me that because these spaces are not a legal requirement there is nothing they can do. In short, it is not a ‘legal offence’ to park there so they claim to be powerless to do anything constructive,’ she adds.
‘I believe this is a cop out. Many of these same stores would happily clamp a car that flagrantly parked on it’s premise all day while the owner took the bus into town for example. So why can they not start to police the parent and child spaces? All it would take is for a few notices to be issued for people to start to get the message.’
Despite having already netted up over 3,500 signatures, Niamh concludes her statement by urging other mums and dads to help her take a stand.
Judging by the comments people have posted on the page, it’s a gripe others are keen to raise too.
‘This really annoys me. It is literally impossible to get a baby in a car seat in and out of a normal car parking space,’ said one.
‘They wouldn’t park in a disabled space as quick’
Another agreed: ‘It’s so important for families to have these spaces, it provides safety.’
What do you think? Do you share in Niamh’s frustrations? Let us know your opinion in the comments below!