Blue badge fraud crackdown in Sheffield
Residents are being warned that improper use of a blue badge could lead to a criminal conviction as Sheffield City Council vow to crackdown on the issue.
Sheffield City Council is reminding people that improper use of a blue badge can lead to a criminal conviction and a fine of up to £1,000 plus any costs awarded by the court.
Councillor Mazher Iqbal, cabinet member for transport and infrastructure at Sheffield City Council, said a tougher line would be taken on the issue.
He added: “We want Sheffield residents to be confident in their blue badge scheme and want to tackle fraudulent use head-on.
“We have always taken blue badge fraud seriously and have issued Penalty Charge Notices for improper use, but we are now taking the further step of prosecuting fraudulent use through the courts.
“Taking a tougher line also allows disabled parking bays to be used by genuine blue badge users. At the same time we are being careful not to follow up genuine cases, for example where someone has misplaced their blue badge ensuring only those acting fraudulently are prosecuted.
“If you let someone else use your blue badge, they will be prosecuted and fined and your vehicle will get a penalty charge notice too. No-one else can use your blue badge unless you are travelling with them.”
Disability Hub Chair John Quinn said: “What people don’t realise is that for many disabled people the blue badge is the one thing that can offer us greater independence and help break down some of the barriers we face.
“When I go out to see a band in the city I need to park close to the venue. If drivers who don’t need a blue badge use designated spaces they are taking away my freedom and ability to take part in my community.”