At 8 am on Thursday 15th January (my 76th birthday) I drove onto the parking area of the Prince County Hospital. I was the only vehicle using one of the several empty disable parking spots near the entrance to the hospital. I entered the hospital for treatment passing the commissionaire at his desk. When I returned to my vehicle I had a $25 parking ticket on my windshield. I did not take it seriously, I had worked as a commissionaire at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and was aware commissionaires could not issue actual official police tickets as the hospital grounds are private property. The reason for the ticket my disable permit had expired, it was 15 days overdue. Surely more of an oversight than a crime?
However, just yesterday I received a notice in the mail telling me I had failed to pay the fine and it was now doubled to $50. Should I continue not to pay I would be summons to appear before the Justice of the Peace. To say the least I was surprised, not to mention a little bit angry. Allow me to describe Monday morning 15th January 2015, as I saw it. First of all please note, one does not attend a hospital at that early hour because they are in prime health. A commissionaire sits at a desk near the main entrance with a good view of the parking area, he also uses a television monitor for the same purpose. This zealous duty bound individual watch me park via his monitor, he saw my disable permit was expired, he watched me enter the hospital and allowed me to pass on into the interior. I assume he then dashed out to my vehicle and placed the ticket, he did this seeing my permit was a mere 15 days in arrears, he also noted my veteran license plate. I returned to my vehicle after approximately twenty minutes and my vehicle was still the only one in the disabled parking area.
I’m of course guilty and for that reason I will pay the $50 fine without any further delay. Nevertheless, this was done in a most heavy handed and officious way. As a 76 year old veteran I have always paid my way and I do not ask or expect special favours or privileges. On the other hand a little common sense and consideration would have resulted in a more pleasant outcome.
The commissionaire saw me parking, he saw the expired permit and he watched me enter the hospital. Why could he not have simply stopped me at the door and brought this to my attention. The problem would have solved on the spot, he would have fulfilled his duty and I would have been made aware of my lapse disable permit in a more reasonable manner. I realize commissionaire do not receive training in the handling of the general public. However, a little common sense and decency can go along way in the running of a smoother world. The incident will not in any way change my opinion about the amazing health care workers at the PCH. Commissionaires on the other hand do in my humble opinion require guidance in how to conduct themselves while interacting with the public. I will forward a copy of this letter to the Head of the PC Hospital administration for their information and perhaps they will consider a little less officious policy toward seniors.
Oh Yeah Happy Birthday to me!!!!!
God Bless and keep reading.