P-05-855 Accessible and Inclusive Public Transport for Citizens with Learning Disabilities in Wales, Correspondence – Petitioner to Chair, 09.10.19

All Wales People First
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9th October 2019


Janet Finch Saunders

Chair of the Petitions Committee


Dear Janet,


Thank you for the letter from Ken Skates AM, Minister for Transport. I would like to outline my response.


We welcome the Bill and the acknowledgement of the importance of local authorities consulting with all stakeholders when any changes are made. We also commend the fact that Transport for Wales has been commissioned to engage with Stakeholders about their transport experience. I will ask our National Council (a member led forum made up of member representatives of all the twenty-two local authorities in Wales) if they would like to invite Transport for Wales, to consult with them as part of their work.


I would stress however that whilst we welcome the Bill, there is still some time before the Bill will be passed as an Act. In the meantime, many people we represent with learning disabilities are already going to be excluded from gaps in transport provision and prevented from accessing communities, education and employment. By the time the Act is in force and the Welsh Government realise the deficits, it could not only contribute to the isolation and loneliness of our members, it could also force a reactive not preventative solution from Welsh Government or local authorities at a later date. As you know, this would be contrary to the ethos and spirt of the Social Services and Well Being Wales Act and other key Welsh Government legislation.


I need to reiterate that unless this issue is addressed soon, more and more people with learning disabilities (who in most cases are not able to drive and rely heavily on public transport because of the nature of their impairment) are going to be potentially excluded from Welsh society, not included, as the Welsh Governments key legislation aims to promote. We feel this is places people with learning disabilities in a particularly vulnerable situation and will make them unequal to most other citizens in Wales.





Yours sincerely

Joe Powell

Chief Executive, All Wales People First