Working with the Scottish Government, the transport community and disabled people through their organisations, Transport Scotland seek to improve accessible travel in Scotland through the development of a 10 year plan; the Accessible Travel Framework.
To view the Accessible Travel Framework, please choose from the links below.
Importance of Accessible Travel
Everyone should be able to use transport. Public Transport should be accessible to everyone who wishes to use it. A lot of the time disabled people still don’t feel supported and comfortable when travelling, or may be unable to make journeys. Some people may also choose not to make journeys because of these barriers.
Accessible buses, coaches, trains and taxis make it easier for people to visit friends, get to the shops or to work.
Transport operators have a duty to ensure that disabled people are able to use their transport. This means making stations, toilets and pathways accessible as well as the transport modes used. Importantly, it also means ensuring that information is in a format suited to peoples’ needs, and that staff are able to assist respectfully and appropriately.
The Accessible Travel Framework has been developed with a view to improving accessible transport in Scotland for all disabled people.
National Transport Accessibility Steering Group
Disabled people and their organisations are working with transport operators, providers, and people in the Scottish Government and local authorities as part of a steering group. The National Transport Accessibility Steering Group is working together to develop The Accessible Travel Framework and will continue to monitor the framework over the course of the next ten years.
The National Transport Accessibility Steering Group includes the following members:
- Association of Transport Coordinating Officers
- CalMac Ferries
- Community Transport Association
- Confederation of Passenger Transport
- Convention of Scottish Local Authorities
- Disability Agenda Scotland
- Guide Dogs UK
- Inclusion Scotland
- Independent Living in Scotland
- Mobility and Access Committee in Scotland
- Network Rail
- Northlink Ferries
- People First (Scotland)
- Regional Transport Partnerships
- Scottish Accessible Transport Alliance
- Scottish Commission for Learning Disability (SCLD)
- Scottish Disability Equality Forum (SDEF)
- Society of Chief Officers of Transportation in Scotland
- Spinal Injuries Scotland
- Transport Scotland
Developing the Accessible Travel Framework
During the development of the Accessible Travel Framework disabled people told Transport Scotland:
- All transport providers need to take responsibility for ensuring that people can complete their journeys.
- Disability Hate Crime needs to be addressed on and around transport.
- All transport providers need to work harder to be accessible. This means doing more than is required of them by law.
- Ticket machines and other equipment associated with travel should be accessible.
- Information must be accessible to everyone if things go wrong during a journey.
- We must have a standard in disability equality training delivery and monitoring across all types of transport (eg., bus, train, ferry, plane, taxi or community transport)
- Disabled people must be more involved in decision making on transport, both as individuals and through disability organisations.
- Customer surveys and other feedback tools must be accessible and relevant to issues affecting disabled travellers
Transport Scotland commissioned the Scottish Disability Equality Forum (SDEF) to deliver engagement events across Scotland in partnership with Access Panels. The aim of these events was to discuss with disabled people the draft Vision, Outcomes and Key Actions of the Accessible Travel Framework.
The report of this engagement process can be accessed below:
Vision of the Accessible Travel Framework
“All disabled people can travel with the same freedom, choice, dignity and opportunity as other citizens.”
This is what disabled people, transport operators and providers, local and central Government want to achieve for Scotland:
- Making sure that more disabled people make successful door-to-door journeys, more often. This means ensuring that disabled people have the support they need to travel whenever and however they want.
- Ensure that disabled people are more involved in how we plan and carry out transport services. We have worked with their partners to hold events and surveys throughout Scotland. The Steering Group will work to ensure that disabled peoples’ thoughts on transport issues go right back into the centre of government. This means that we protect the rights of disabled people to be involved in all aspects of transport to help show what works for them.
- Ensure that everyone involved in delivering transport services will help to enable disabled people to travel. This means that people working at all levels in transport services can understand the needs and wishes of different people with different support needs.
- Ensure that disabled people feel comfortable and safe using public transport – this includes being free from hate crime, bullying and harassment when travelling. This means that we will work to ensure that disabled people don’t feel anxious, confused or worried when travelling or planning travel. It is also about making sure that disabled people aren’t subject to abuse or mistreatment, including hate crime.
How The Vision Can be Achieved
People involved in delivering transport services need to understand how important it is that disabled people are involved in making important decisions which affect them.
This includes planning, design and development of all areas around how people make journeys.
Transport Scotland want the Framework to send a message to all involved in transport that we need to work together to improve how we work with disabled people to improve services.
Actions to Help Achieve The Vision
Some of the things Transport Scotland want to do as part of the framework include:
- Look at how we can improve training by involving disabled people, including those with hidden disabilities and basic British Sign Language (BSL) phrases
- Agree on standards of service for disabled people if something goes wrong on their journey.
- Produce information which makes it easier to understand specific changes and how they benefit people with different support needs.
- Look at how transport providers currently ask their customers about their services and agree on standards for feedback. This could include mystery shopping and surveys.
- Look at how we can make it easier for disabled people to get involved with planning and decision-making with transport providers.
- Create a place where people can get accessible information about planning a journey across different types of transport. This would include buying tickets and finding out about concessions
Monitoring the Accessible Travel Framework
The Accessible Travel Framework will be monitored by the Transport Accessibility Steering Group over the course of the next 10 years. It will also link with Community Planning Partnerships, Regional Transport Partnerships and transport operator led customer service groups.
The Steering Group will look at things like:
- What disabled people think about services and what kind of barriers they experience whilst travelling
- Numbers of disabled people using buses, ferries and trains
- Working with Disabled People’s Organisations to make surveys and groups for disabled people to talk about how the plan is doing
As part of Transport Scotland’s work on the Accessible Travel Framework, disabled people from all across Scotland are invited to get involved with the 10 year process. Find out more about how to get involved.