The Government recently announced that it is adopting my proposals for a Disabled Passengers Charter to improve travel opportunities and conditions for disabled people across the country on public transport.
I brought these plans forward to Parliament in a Private Member’s Bill in September, having worked on the details with Scope, the disability equality charity. I proposed bringing together the different regulations and complaints procedures for all modes of land transport into a simple, accessible document so that disabled people can know their rights and how to access them.
The Department for Transport has announced that it is introducing this charter to boost consumer confidence and provide an online one-stop shop on passenger rights and complaints procedures for disabled people.
The Government adopting my proposals is very good news. According to a 2019 survey of disabled people for Scope, 30% said that difficulties with public transport have reduced their independence, and as many as four in five said they felt stressed or anxious when planning or carrying out such a journey.
But our transport system must be accessible for all, from people with visual impairments, to wheelchair users, to people with learning disabilities. Having your rights clearly available will make transport operators more conscious of your needs and make them more responsive. This is a simple, inexpensive step that will hopefully make life easier for millions of people across the country.