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Chamber and committees

Question ref. S6W-10266
Asked by: Kenneth Gibson, Cunninghame North, Scottish National Party
Date lodged: 11 August 2022

Question

To ask the Scottish Government (a) what steps it is taking and (b) how it is working with local authorities and further and higher education institutions, to encourage the uptake of a free bus pass through the Young Persons' (Under 22s) Free Bus Travel scheme by young people in schools, colleges and universities.

Current status: Answered by Jenny Gilruth on 5 September 2022


Answer

Transport Scotland has recently undertaken a significant engagement exercise with local authorities, in partnership with the Improvement Service and National Entitlement Card Programme Office (NECPO). This has allowed us to assess offline application processes, including capacity and uptake of applications through schools, and we have provided additional support to facilitate this where it has been requested.

We have provided a communications toolkit and promotional materials to local authorities, schools, further education bodies and a wide range of other stakeholders. Engagement has been positive with the Student Awards Agency for Scotland, Universities Scotland, Colleges Scotland, and others, who have aided in the promotion of the scheme to students through college and university networks.

Transport Scotland also launched freebus.scot in May to help improve communications about the scheme, simplify information about the application process, emphasise the benefits of the scheme, provide tips for safe travel and, ultimately, increase uptake across Scotland.