Date lodged: 10 September 2018
To ask the Scottish Government whether its proposed Transport Bill will have scope to (a) increase the protection and (b) criminalise the illegal use of parking places for disabled people.
Answered by: Michael Matheson 25 September 2018
It is already a criminal offence to misuse a blue badge. The Disabled Persons' Parking Badges (Scotland) Act 2014 provided greater powers to local authorities to enforce the rules of the blue badge scheme, including allowing spot checks by non-uniformed authorised officers to check blue badges are being used by the rightful holder. Use of these powers is the responsibility of individual local authorities.
The Transport (Scotland) Bill does not include a provision to make the misuse of Disabled Persons' Parking Places a criminal offence. It will however prohibit double parking and parking on pavements and is aimed at promoting, supporting and advancing the rights of pedestrians to ensure our pavements and roads are accessible for all.
The Scottish Government has recently undertaken a review of the Disabled Persons' Parking Places (Scotland) Act 2009 (DPPPA) and the former Minister for Transport and the Islands appeared before a committee regarding post legislative scrutiny and the ways in which things can be improved.
We are continuing to work with stakeholders to address the items raised by the Committee and are currently considering legislative changes to ensure better enforcement can be achieved. Consideration is also being given to a publicity campaign to highlight the issues faced in relation to parking for people with disabilities.