One of the most important campaigns run by Disabled Motoring UK (DMUK) is encouraging local authorities to make sure that the Blue Badge Scheme is properly administered and enforced. There are now 2.39 million Blue Badges held in England, which is 4.4% of the population. This figure has decreased each year since the reforms of the Blue Badge application process in 2011/12.
DMUK took part in these reforms and is pleased that the decrease in the number of badges being issued suggests they are now only being granted to the people that meet the criteria.
At the end of January the Department for Transport (DfT) released new statistics on the number of prosecutions for misuse of the Blue Badge scheme. The statistics look at local authorities in England from 1 April 2014 to 31 March 2015. The number of prosecutions for misuse during this period was 985, compared with the 535 prosecutions that took place the previous year. This is an 84% rise.
The overwhelming majority of cases were against non-disabled people using another person’s Blue Badge. Only 28 cases out of the 985 were against Blue Badge holders.