HC Deb 20 December 1999 vol 341 cc342-3W
Mr. Dobbin

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what plans he has to promote the provision of accessible transport for disabled people. [103619]

Mr. Hill

The Government believe that accessible public transport, within the framework of an integrated transport policy, is fundamentally important to delivering our commitment to comprehensive civil rights for disabled people. We have already implemented regulations under the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 to ensure that all new trains are accessible to disabled people, including those who travel in wheelchairs. We will be introducing similar requirements for new buses and coaches from next year and for licensed taxis from 2002.

We are also working with local authorities to produce guidance on best practice in removing barriers to public transport infrastructure and in the pedestrian environment.

The Disability Rights Task Force has just published its recommendations to Government on possible extensions to the Disability Discrimination Act. We are considering their recommendations for further requirements on accessibility in the transport field.