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Call for disabled badge thieves to be jailed

( 12/11/2012 )

A Conservative MP has called for anyone who steals a disabled parking badge to be given a mandatory minimum six month jail sentence.

Philip Davies, the MP for Shipley in West Yorkshire, believes the police and courts need to take thefts of these 'blue badges' more seriously and lay down a precedent to help prevent further offences.

Disabled 'blue badges' give UK motorists and
car insurance policy holders priority parking as well as an exemption from on-street charges.

Mr Davies has told the Press Association about the problems associated with the theft of these permits, saying, "This actually causes a great deal of distress to many people. It causes them not just inconvenience but it can deprive people of actually going out and living their lives.

"If somebody steals a blue badge, the double whammy effect is not only are they then using a space that they don't need and denying somebody else that space, but they've also taken away the blue badge from the person who genuinely does need it so that they are also unable to claim their space."

The Tory MP has also called for drivers who use counterfeit disabled parking permits to face at least three months in prison.

His calls come as fellow Conservative MP Simon Kirby recently introduced the Disabled Persons Parking Badges Bill to parliament. The legislation is intended to tighten the rules surrounding 'blue badges' and to designate power so that plain clothes officials could go out and inspect permits.

The Bill has now been passed on to the House of Lords following an unopposed third reading in Parliament.

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