I Smell a Rat: Disney Disability Scams

Reader FavoriteThere are always going to be scams when it comes to living with MS or any other chronic disease. There is always that next person in line waiting to sell us something ‘special’ that will cure our MS. Those very well might be the same people who also want my money to make me a size 8 or to experience the eternal fountain of youth through special surgery-free procedures guaranteed to take years of my appearance. It’s easy to ignore those scams because they need me to do something – open my purse and share my credit card number.

But now there is a different type of scam going on that has been in the news recently – instead of lining up to take my money, there is an unscrupulous group of people who want to take my place in line. No, they don’t want to buy the next cure – they want preferential treatment and to get that, they are pretending to have our disease and others like it.

Walt Disney World is wonderful to their guests who need special accommodations. I know first- hand the value of visiting their guest services office, completing their brief questionnaire and getting a special accommodations card that allows me and my park companions to bypass long lines and get priority seating at shows. Getting that card made the difference last year when I went to WDW with my grandchildren – the heat was a stifling 90+ degrees and I would have been useless if I had to stand in long lines. But we were smart – we rented a wheelchair and got that special pass. The procedure was incredibly simple and all of the Disney employees were gracious and went out their way to accommodate my need to avoid the heat and waiting in long lines. It turned what would have been a miserable four days for me into ones full of laughs and good memories for the grandchildren and myself.

It seems others have discovered Disney’s generous policy toward guests with special needs and have taken to buying themselves a way to get one of those passes for their very own – they are RENTING the services of a person with disabilities to be their guide for the day and using them to get to the front of the line or avoid the lines entirely.  Others more brazen skip that pretense and present themselves as disabled, and fake the need for  help to get that golden ticket that unlocks the Kingdom in so many special ways.

There is very little ‘special’ that comes our way from having MS.  My adult son called the guest pass my little rainbow.  He confused me with that statement until he explained his thinking – there is nothing good that comes out of living with MS and he was happy that there was something that made my life just a little bit better, as temporary as it was. For four days, I had that little rainbow along for the ride.

The people who go to the happy, magical place the little mouse Mickey built and pretend they have a disability such as Multiple Sclerosis are rats or worse; they should also have to get in line and live with MS outside the fences of the happiest place on Earth.

Wishing you well,


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