Liberal Party van blocks handicap parking spaces

Bad optics for Michael Ignatieff's visit at the Dartmouth Sportsplex.

I should know by now to carry my camera with me everywhere.

Yesterday, national Liberal Party leader Michael Ignatieff spoke at the Dartmouth Sportsplex arena to shore up support for provincial Liberal Party leader Stephen McNeil. I was downstairs in the gym.

When I left, there was the Liberal Party van parked sideways across six handicap parking spaces, with cones and ribbons around it lest any handicapped driver get any ideas.

The Sportsplex blocks these spaces with uncomfortable regularity, but you gotta wonder why none of the Liberal handlers or pols didn't say, "Hey, the optics are all wrong here, let's park on the other side of the door and block the non-restricted parking instead."

It could, I suppose, be argued that there is a surplus of handicap parking spaces at the Sportsplex—there are four immediately in front of the door, with the six across the lane from the door; I rarely see more than three or four in use, but on the other hand, if they're all going to be used it'll be for some high-profile event like, say, the appearance of the national leader of a political party.

Arguments about what's the right number of handicap parking spaces aside, they evidently were felt necessary (or were required by law) when the Sportsplex was built, and the spaces should be sacrosanct regardless.

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