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Introduction of TfA New Director, April Clifford

Added: 23 February 2018 | Updated: 23 February 2018

It’s an honour and a privilege to be the new Director of Transport for All. For 15 years I’ve worked fighting for the rights of Disabled and Older people so it feels natural to join such a unique and valuable organisation tackling the specific issues of accessing transport; an area so key to accessing work, leisure, socialising – well the list is endless! Throughout my career I have followed the work and successes of Transport for All and I’m looking forward to continuing to foster the hard work and dedication that has so impressed me.

We are facing a significant time for transport in the capital. There are opportunities such as Crossrail – which Transport for All and its members fought so hard to make fully accessible – but there are many threats. Budget and staffing cuts are having a negative impact on many of these planned improvements, not least the Access for All programme. I intend to build on the successes to date, engaging with you, our members and supporters to ensure transport accessibility remains at the top of the agenda. A lot has been achieved but there is still much to do.

In addition to cuts, there is inconsistency in how Disabled and older Londoners are supported to use transport. London Underground’s ‘turn-up-and-go’ support for Disabled transport users can be unpredictable but rail company refusal to offer ‘turn-up-and-go’ means spontaneous travel is a lottery. Access to buses is still failing. There are regular lift closures at many stations. Changing Places accessible toilets are few and far between. All of this must change.

2018 will be a year of transformation: the pedestrianisation of Oxford Street; the Cycle infrastructure consultation; Bus accessibility; the Mayor’s Transport Strategy; and opening up Taxicard Dial-a-Ride and Blue Badges to people with invisible impairments. We must keep a close eye on these issues and more, and ensure our voice is heard loudly.

This is a crucial time for transport and indeed for Transport for All. Over the coming weeks and months I will be meeting with members, supporters and staff, with our sister organisations, and with stakeholders in the transport industry to identify our priorities and future direction. I need your thoughts and suggestions to help move us forward.

The core values of Transport for All remain integral to the work we do: championing the rights of disabled and older people to travel with freedom and independence in London. It is only through the involvement of our members and supporters that we have been able to achieve our past successes. Our future victories will also depend on our members. I urge anyone not already signed up to become a member. With your support we will continue to ensure that transport for all is a right and not a privilege. Join us today and help make a difference.

April Clifford

TfA Director


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