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PM's Stunt Highlights Mobility Parking


30 June 2008

Prime Minister's Stunt Highlights Mobility Parking Fine Increase

With a stroke of marketing genius Prime Minister Helen Clark has thrown her weight behind the recent legislative changes around Mobility Parking.

At the weekend the Prime Minister's motorcade blocked off an entire bay of mobility parking in central Christchurch to highlight how annoying and inappropriate it is when able bodied people misuse these spaces.

CCS Disability Action CEO Viv Maidaborn calls the stunt a brave but serious message to all New Zealanders.

"It's great to see the Prime Minister taking Mobility Parking seriously. It was a risky strategy but the Prime Minister has made the New Zealand public sit up and take notice of the new $150 fines," says Viv Maidaborn.

The stunt comes a week after a fine increases were introduced by the Ministry of Transport. People parking in the spaces without a valid Mobility Parking Permit from CCS Disability Action will be fined $150, up from $40.

The stunt has not gone down well with all people though. An 81 year old Christchurch Mobility Parking Permit holder with Parkinson's disease had to struggle to find another space on a cold and wet Christchurch night because of the Prime Minister's cheeky motorcade stunt.

Peter Wilson, Mobility Parking Permit Scheme Manager applauds the Prime Minister for bringing added awareness to the legislative change and fine increase.

"Mobility parking permit holders rely on these parking spaces to access and contribute to their community. Hopefully increased fines and awareness will mean more permit holders being able to access parking spaces in their communities," says Peter Wilson.

Research undertaken by CCS Disability Action found that 50% of vehicles using public mobility parking spaces were doing so illegally.



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