BLUE BADGE PROJECT
Citizen’s Advice Volunteer
Through my Research and Campaign work, I identified that the Blue Badge Application process needed to be looked at. I spoke to my colleagues about my proposal for changing the application system, and I got the go ahead to write a report detailing these ideas and devising a survey to support it. My survey has been sent out to all Surrey CAB Managers, and I also sent my proposal and survey to the Blue Badge Department of Surrey County Council. The main objective is to streamline the Application Form, and eliminate the need for people with long-term disabilities to fill out large parts of the form every time they require a new badge. My way of overcoming this, is to colour code past claimants.
RED: Long-term disabled – tick a box to renew badge and send in a recent picture
AMBER: Short-term Disabled – May require an assessment
GREEN: New Blue Badge Claimants – Will be require to complete the form in its entirety
As part of my work with Surrey County Council I completed the online renewal form. Once people have done this, this system remembers you for next time and is very straight forward, but only if people own a computer or are computer literate.
If people need to apply for a Blue Badge, the likelihood is that they are vulnerable in some way. The less paper they deal with, the better. My feedback suggests that the lengthy application form is putting people off applying, and the worry is that this could lead to genuine claimants becoming isolated.