Haringey 'virtual parking permits' to tackle blue badge thefts

Blue badge permit Haringey Council

The scheme enables blue badge holders to apply for a virtual permit - Credit: Haringey Council

Haringey Council is hoping the launch of its free virtual parking permit for disabled residents can result in blue badge thefts becoming a thing of the past.

The scheme, launched in December, enables blue badge holders who either own a car, or live with someone who does, to register their number plate rather than have to display their badge for traffic wardens. 

For example, the parent of a young disabled child with a blue badge, who is either too young to drive or own a car, will be eligible for the permit.  

A partner or child of an elderly parent would also be able to apply, as long as the car is registered to the same address as the blue badge holder. 

The permit only applies in Haringey to disabled people who already have a blue badge. 

Cllr Seema Chandwani, Labour councillor for West Green and cabinet member for welfare, customers and public realm, said: “Unfortunately blue badge theft is on the increase across the country. I know from speaking to residents who are victims of this crime, how distressing this can be.  

“I urge all blue badge holders with their own vehicles to obtain their free new virtual (paperless) disabled parking permit. It reduces the need for you to leave your badge in your window and therefore keeps it away from thieves operating in the borough.  

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“This is also available to blue badge holders who may not be the driver but someone else in the household owns the car.” 

Mary Langan, chair of the Severe and Complex Needs Families Group, agreed that blue badges being stolen is an issue. 

She said: “Thefts of blue badges are of course a major concern: our car has been burgled three times, necessitating time-consuming window repairs as well as negotiating the bureaucracy of police reports, insurance claims, badge replacement.” 

There are currently about 8,000 blue badge holders in Haringey. While it is unsure exactly how many will be eligible for the scheme, Cllr Chandwani said the council is working on the basis 50% being drivers or having access to a family member driving. 

To apply for a free virtual disabled parking permit, visit the Haringey Council website or call 0208 489 1000.

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