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Previous Action

Representations were made to three local MSPs to engage their interest in the project and to inform them of the results of a survey involving over 1000 older people in Dumfries and Galloway. This led to the CPP3 team adopting a four point process for raising the awareness at Holyrood of the rural transport issues for older people:

1. Delivered a “Time for Reflection” talk on the topic in the Scottish Parliament building. This was done on 14 December 2011.
2. Encourage a Members Debate to bring the issue before the Scottish Parliament. This is being led by Alex Fergusson MSP with the support of Elaine Murray MSP and Aileen McLeod MSP - Motion S4M-01763: Alex Fergusson, Galloway and West Dumfries, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 19/01/2012.
3. Submit a petition to follow up the Members Debate and to raise the profile of the issues, leading to action being taken. This is the subject of this submission.
4. Seek the support of the Equal Opportunities Committee to progress the issue. This had strong support from Claudia Beamish before her role changed and is ongoing. Follow up activities are being arranged.

Action is also being taken to raise awareness in local bodies in Dumfries and Galloway, namely the Local Authority, Health Board and SWestrans. This has included a presentation to SWestrans Board on our project, with a follow up presentation to be confirmed demonstrating our findings; a summary research report which has been circulated to key personnel in the Local Authority and Health Board; participation in a Rural Transport Solutions networking event including presentation of our summary report and a follow up meeting  arranged with officers from the Local Authority’s transport division to consider future joint working; participation in a local consultation event on Improving Access to the Patient Transport Service delivered by the Scottish Ambulance Service.

We have identified further actions at local level, but would still aim to submit this petition as the issues affect older people across Scotland.

Local research showed that the Rural Transport Solutions pilot project in Wigtownshire is an example of good practice and web based research also indicated good practice in Buchan. Both initiatives demonstrated significant improvement in efficiency savings and customer satisfaction over current standard practice.