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14th Feb 2018

One Irish mum is starting a petition to enforce parent parking spaces

Orlaith Condon

‘They are a necessity for parents’.

It’s many a parents’ nightmare – heading to the shops with a carload of screaming children, only to drive around for near 20 minutes looking for a spot as all the parent and child spaces are occupied.

What makes the scenario even worse? The fact that some of the occupants aren’t even parents.

Yep, cue blood temperature rising to the boil.

Well, one woman is attempting to get some punishments put in place for those who misuse the parent and child parking spots.

“As a new mum, I use the parent and child care parking spaces provided by Irish retailers and supermarkets on an almost daily basis,” reads the introduction to Niamh O’Reilly’s petition.

“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.

“This is practically impossible to do in a regular space.”

The petition went on to address the constant misuse of parent and child parking spaces with the mum saying other drivers are “not respecting” the needs of parents.

“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 regularly sized space further away from the door.”

The petition is calling for retailers to enforce the rules of their carparks despite there being no legal requirements that would encourage them to do so, a defence this mum is calling a “cop out”.

“Many of these same stores would happily clamp a car that flagrantly parked on its 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?”

The petition was started just one week ago on with a target of 5,000 signatures, since then it has received just under 4,000 signatures and huge support from parents around the country.