Fiona Mactaggart MP took on the challenge of making the streets of Slough safer for people with sight loss when she met the charity Guide Dogs at the Labour Party Conference.
Guide Dogs is calling on MPs and the public to back a new Bill to outlaw irresponsible parking. According to the charity, badly parked cars are putting the lives of pedestrians up and down the country at risk every day. These vehicles are forcing people to step out into the road, without being able to clearly see on-coming traffic.
The MP for Slough is supporting Guide Dogs campaign on pavement parking, and welcomed Slough Council’s plans which reflect Guide Dogs’ call to restrict it to designated areas which are clearly marked and where there is sufficient space between the car and the inner edge of the pavement for people to walk safely.
There are nearly two million people in the UK who are living with sight loss and by 2050, there could be nearly four million. So it’s more important than ever that our streets are safe for people who are blind or partially sighted.
Fiona commented, “Cars and other obstructions on pavements stops people from getting about, meeting people and getting involved in their communities. That’s not fair. I’ll support the Bill as it progresses through Parliament so people who rely on clear pavements to get about are able to.”
James White, Senior Campaigns Manager at Guide Dogs, said, “Parking on pavements is blighting Britain's streets. It puts all pedestrians in danger, particularly those living with sight loss.
“It is terrifying for someone who cannot see oncoming traffic to take the risk of stepping out into a road because someone has decided to park on the pavement. We hope this year will see this dangerous practice outlawed once and for all, and call on all MPs to back a change in the law."