Protest against reduced taxi journeys for disabled people

Harrow Association of Disabled People is concerned that many disabled people in the borough are affected by the reduction in taxi card journeys.
They say Harrow council provides only 40 subsidised taxi journey per year. This is the lowest of any London Borough. Hillingdon, by contrast provide 104 journeys per year.
“Harrow was ahead in reducing this discretionary provision because of its budgetary challenges and low reserves – other councils are now planning similar measures in the face of significant cuts to the council budgets” said Fern Silverio, head of service- collections & housing benefits.
The Taxicard service gives disabled people who have complex problems, and struggle to use public transport, a lifeline by paying for door-to-door taxi trips.
The council had previously said that cutting the number of permitted trips is the only way of keeping the service running at all in the face of funding cuts.
“It is time local authorities stop using austerity as an excuse to cut vital services for disabled people” says Adam Gabsi, vice chair of HAD.
“In consultation with the voluntary sector regarding social care and other community services, the council decided to stop £700,000 subsidiary to this service for budgetary reasons back in 2012 but elected to continue for the TFL grant to keep the service running” said Fern Silverio, head of service- collections & housing benefits.
“The council need to speak to the very people that they are affecting to understand what impact their decisions are having on peoples physical and mental health. Disabled people want equality, justice and the freedom to live. The Taxi card scheme helps to facilitate this and should not have been cut” he said.
Such is the strength of feelings, that on December 3rd, which is International Day of Disabled People, Harrow Association of Disabled people, Harrow Multiple Sclerosis and Harrow Mencap are having a protest march to the Civic Centre to present a petition to the Harrow Mayor.
The march assembles at the Red Brick Cafe, 38-40 High Street Wealdstone, at 10am on 3 December 2018 and Arrive at the Civic Centre around 11.30am.