Disabled people being isolated due to lack of transport in Hartlepool

Fears that lack of transport is making disabled people socially isolated are to be discussed at a meeting.

Thursday, 11th August 2016, 5:00 am
Updated Thursday, 11th August 2016, 9:44 am
Councillor Ray Martin-Wells is urging people to attend a meeting to discuss lack of disabled transport

Residents are being urged to go along and share their experiences during a forum being held at Hartlepool Civic Centre in Victoria Road.

An investigation by the town council’s Audit and Governance Committee has been launched at the request of the authority’s Adult Services Committee - amid fears a lack of accessible transport in the town is putting people at increased risk of social isolation.

Councillor Ray Martin-Wells, chair of the Audit and Governance Committee, said: “Transport should be accessible for everyone.

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“Accessible buses, coaches, trains and taxis make it easier for people to visit friends, get to the shops or to work and generally lead active lives.

“As part of our evidence gathering process, it is important that we hear first-hand from as many people as possible who feel that their lives are being affected by a lack of such transport.

“Their views are vital if we are to fully understand the scale of the problem in Hartlepool and, in turn, come up with solutions.”

At a recent meeting of the Adult Services Committee, where it was agreed to refer the matter for investigation, councillors heard how consultation with community groups had highlighted a decline in the number and availability of wheelchair-accessible vehicles.

The meeting will take place within Committee Room B on Thursday, August 18, at 2pm where people affected by the issue will be able to make their views known.