From April 2019, the scheme will be expanded to include people with what is often described as ‘hidden disabilities’, such as mental health issues or autism.
Automatic entitlement to the Blue Badge will be extended to those in England who score 10 points under their Personal Independence Payment (PIP) mobility test of being “unable to undertake any journey because it would cause overwhelming psychological distress to the claimant”.
Those who get PIP mobility for other reasons will not qualify for a Blue Badge automatically, but they may still be able to qualify for a Blue Badge if they fall into one of three groups:
People in England who fall into one of these three groups will qualify for a Blue Badge (regardless of whether they get PIP or not). However, to qualify they will need to be assessed by their local authority.
There are many disability rights campaigners championing these changes, but many people who currently have a Blue Badge, also feel there aren’t enough disabled parking spaces available.
The charity Disability Rights UK has further information on their website, which can be accessed here
The charity, Contact For families with disabled children also offer information about how the new changes will affect you, you can access this information here
The Government has also introduced an online application system which is intended to be quicker and easier to use. You can read more about this here
We would love to hear your experiences of using the online system, how did you find the process? was it easy to use? get in touch and tell us your experiences.