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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

Investing in community transport will ease burden on NHS and social care


Influential organisation publishes manifesto ahead of elections

National charity, Community Transport Association (CTA). is calling for the next UK government to utilise community solutions in a hard-hitting manifesto on the state of accessible transport across the UK.  

The manifesto, A Better Future for Transport: National Challenges, Community Solutions. calls for a new partnership between the next UK government, CTA and the Community Transport sector to continue to fill the gaps left by a shrinking bus network; respond to an ageing population, protect the future of the NHS and social care; tackle climate change, reduce poverty, inequality and the cost of living crisis, and level up the nations and regions of the UK.  

CTA Director for Scotland, David Kelly said: “Investing in community solutions is essential to build a more accessible, affordable, and attractive transport system with far-reaching benefits. 

“As we look towards the general election, it is vital the next UK government fully values and invests in community transport. Working with communities is not only a pragmatic solution to alleviate pressures on our NHS and the social care system, but it is also the right thing to do to demonstrate our collective commitment to ensuring universal access and greater equality for generations to come.” 

Produced in collaboration with UK wide Community Transport operators and CTA members, the CTA Manifesto focuses on five key priorities based on the national challenges facing the UK.

CTA research found that trips to access health services are amongst the popular purposes for CT, to support people to get to GP surgeries, hospitals, hospices, vaccination centers and care homes.

Accessible ‘door-to-door’ or ‘door-through-door’ services by community transport make thousands of health and social care appointments possible every year and save millions of pounds through preventing missed appointments, delayed discharges and longer waiting lists. 

The benefits of these schemes run far beyond a single health-related journey. Launched in August 2022, CTA supported 18 pilot schemes through the Tackling Loneliness through CT project in a bid to research how transport policies can reduce the number of people feeling lonely in England. 

Some 93% of people participating in the project reported that accessing CT had a positive impact on feelings of isolation or loneliness. 

Jeff Zycinski, manager at Partnerships for Wellbeing in Inverness said: “The CTA Manifesto makes clear something that we at Partnerships for Wellbeing have long recognised; community transport is about so much more than getting people from A to B.

“It’s about providing a service that allows people to live well for longer, that allows older and disabled adults to retain a level of independence and to continue living in their own homes and communities, postponing by many years the need for residential or nursing care.  

“To that end it eases the financial burden on the NHS and council services and, should, therefore be the kind of support that is built into any health and wellbeing infrastructure plans by government and local authorities.” 



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