A letter to parents & carers from the Wirral Bus Operators Association about the impact of council spending cuts to transport. How can you be heard?
A letter from the Wirral Bus Operators Association
Wirral Borough Council's decision to save £109 million pounds in only 3 years has been left in most part to the old, the young and the disadvantaged sections of our community to take a large portion of cutbacks, similar tactics echoed nationally by the Conservative/Liberal coalition. It is now obvious that these measures are not serving the population, so why is this authority sticking to such a flawed process. Would it not be prudent to give a more realistic term to assist the authority to take care of all its residents/voters?
Certain services such as transport for young people are only used and appreciated in large, by families, carers, schools, etc...Making children use public transport who are vulnerable, is a very frightening prospect for the child and family, as safety for these children is paramount. How can this be assured when a child is left to fend for themselves, with so many obstacles to negotiate on a daily basis, such as bus timetables, other passengers, dark nights, major roads and in some cases, having to use more than one bus to and from school? In some cases children will not show outwardly that they have special needs and other passengers, children and adults will not understand nor appreciate your child's situation. There are also the darker elements to this, certain individuals within our community are a threat to every child, and these predators are opportunists who will soon, if not already, be wiser....
Some parents will also need to make drastic changes to their daily schedules in relation to informing their employer that they will arrive later to work and leave earlier when taking their child/children to and from school. There will also be a measure of concern to parents/carers having to organise their other children's journeys to and from school.
The authority does not consider a child who reaches the age of sixteen (post 16) to be their legal and now social responsibility, to assist with their transport needs. In most cases, a child with special needs will become an adult with special needs, so why would the authority remove assistance at such a young age, when the young adult still requires support.
There is no doubt you have many other concerns, items you can bring to your local councillors attention. The authority has publicly said that they have held a "Comprehensive programme of consultation" They didn't consult you! Why? The authority is determined to make these drastic cuts, only you can convince them otherwise.
If these measures are implemented, and your transport disappears, it will not return for your child/children or future generations, once it's gone, it's gone.
It will take everyone's voice to be heard to stop this from happening, please be heard!
Online questionnaire: www.wirral.gov.uk/whatreallymatters
Contact your councillor: www.wirral.gov.uk