Last year it was revealed that, from 2019, people with hidden disabilities will be granted access to the scheme too. The idea is that people with less obvious health conditions, such as autism, will have the same right to park in disabled bays as those with physical disabilities.
Now the government has published regulations confirming that these new rules will start to apply from the 30 August 2019. Click the link below for the official government announcement http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2019/891/made
As a result of last year’s consultation, automatic entitlement to the Blue Badge will be extended to those in England who score 10 points under the https://www.gov.uk/pip mobility test of being “ in relation to the “planning and following journeys” activity on the grounds that they cannot undertake any journey because it would cause them overwhelming psychological distress.”
Entitlement will also be extended to those who are assessed as having an enduring and substantial difficulty which causes them during a journey to either:
- Be unable to walk.
- Experience very considerable difficulty whilst walking, which may include very considerable psychological distress.
- Be at risk of serious harm when walking; or pose, when walking, a risk of serious harm to any other person.
The new rules also allow local authorities to use a broader range of professionals to assess the nature and effects of an applicant’s particular disability on their ability to get around.
Under current rules it makes it very difficult for many people with “Hidden Disabilities”, people on the Autism Spectrum and Learning difficulties to qualify.
Ruby Hartshorn, Chair of Shropshire Disability Network says
“We understand the stress caused to people and families when applying to renew their blue badge and they are refused. There is also the added stress of going to appeal. We would encourage anyone refused renewal of their blue badge not to accept the refusal but to go to appeal and not wait for the new rules to come into force on 30th August. The same applies to first time applicants*.
Anyone who needs help with an appeal can contact us using this form. https://shropshiredisability.net/contact/