Written Question to The Department for Transport

Suzanne Webb:

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans are in place to ensure customer confidence in the (a) accessibility, (b) adequacy of access for blind and partially sighted people and (c) cleanliness of the public transport system once covid-19 lockdown measures have been relaxed.

 

Chris Heaton-Harris:

On 12 May 2020, in response to Covid-19, the Department for Transport published safer travel guidance for passengers and operators. These documents are clear that all equality and discrimination laws and obligations continue to apply and that operators should ensure everyone who needs to can continue to access the transport network.

Operators should consider their messaging, and continue to support those with protected characteristics, as they normally would. The documents also remind passengers of the potentially different experience of those with disabilities, including hidden disabilities. The Department is working closely with the Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee to identify how to improve the experience of disabled passengers during lockdown and into the future.

The guidance advises the public to avoid public transport where possible and, if they need to use it, how to stay safe – for example by wearing a face covering if possible and washing their hands before, during and after travel. We have advised operators that they could consider additional cleaning measures and protocols to limit coronavirus transmission. These steps should help boost confidence for all passengers.