New Disabled Parking Bill agreed by Scottish Parliament
Disabled parking bays, which are under the control of Falkirk Council and other local authorities, are to become legally enforceable after MSPs voted in favour Jackie Baillie’s Members Bill. There are an estimated one million disabled people resident in Scotland – around a quarter are registered Blue Badge holders who will benefit from this Bill.
Falkirk East MSP Cathy Peattie welcomed the Bill, which she has supported since it was first mooted.
“This is an issue that many constituents have spoken to me about,” she said, “and I know their views are echoed throughout Scotland, as this was one of the issues that was highlighted by the Disability Inquiry undertaken by the Equal Opportunities Committee while I was Convener of the committee.
“This Bill will make a difference for many disabled people across Scotland. Relying on the courtesy of others not to park in disabled spaces has proved inadequate too often. It would of course be best if all drivers respect the needs of disabled people, by not parking in designated parking spaces, but this Bill will ensure that such spaces are now legally enforceable.
“I am pleased to see that the Scottish Parliament has passed this Bill and I hope it will send a strong message to those who suffer disabled parking abuse that the parliament is on their side.”
As well as the duty on local authorities, the Bill further requires councils to contact owners and/or operators of private car parks including supermarkets and out of town retail centres to negotiate an agreement which would make their disabled persons’ parking places enforceable.
Jackie Baillie, Dumbarton MSP, added:
“I am delighted that my Members Bill was has been passed by the Scottish Parliament and will now become law. The abuse of disabled parking is a quality of life issue and it is a profoundly upsetting problem for disabled people. I hope this legislation will make it that bit easier for disabled people to go about their day to day lives.”