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Blue Badges

Volume 454: debated on Tuesday 5 December 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) how many blue badges for children under two years old have been authorised by local authorities in England in each of the last 10 years; (102014)

(2) whether local authorities have discretion in issuing blue badges to children under two years old.

Under the regulations governing the Blue Badge Scheme in England local authorities are not authorised to issue blue badges to children under the age of two. This rule was introduced in 1983 and there are no exemptions to that rule.

However, following a comprehensive review of the Blue Badge Scheme, we accepted a recommendation from our statutory advisers, the Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee (DPTAC), to extend eligibility to children under two whose medical needs require the transport of bulky, essential medical equipment. This change, along with a number of others, requires amendments to secondary legislation and we are hoping to consult on draft regulations in the near future.