The role of transport in social isolation among older people.
Older people living in areas where bus services are poor, and those who can't use mainstream buses due to disability or ill health, can be particularly vulnerable to loneliness and isolation. Where available, Community Transport services can step in to ensure otherwise isolated older people can enjoy social opportunities and access services.
However a legacy of under-investment in Community Transport combined with a gradual reduction in commercial bus services meant that too few were able to benefit.
Our 'Still Waiting' campaign
Age Scotland called for a long term strategy and funding to increase and sustain Community Transport services across Scotland.
'Still Waiting' was a campaign for free bus passes to be valid on all Community Transport services, and for the scheme to be adjusted so that participating is cost effective for voluntary sector transport providers (100% reimbursement).
What was the outcome?
Our "Still Waiting" campaign resulted in us handing a petition of 6,500 signatures to the Transport Minister, Keith Brown MSP. This led to an extra £1 million being invested in community minibuses in 2013/2014 and the commissioning of further research in 2014/2015 into the benefits of community transport.