By Mark Isherwood

MS for North Wales

I had a meeting with a disabled constituent to discuss their experience of serious shortcomings with the application and renewal process for Blue Badge parking permits in Wales, which help disabled people or people with health conditions park closer to their destination.

Back in January, I raised these problems in the Chamber as Shadow Social Justice Minister and Chair of the Cross-Party Group on Disability in the Senedd, and called on the Welsh Government to take action to remove the barriers disabled people in Wales are facing in obtaining Blue Badges.

However, this constituent is one amongst many, with a range of physical or neuro-developmental conditions, who have contacted me after their Blue Badge parking permit applications or renewals were declined by Local Authorities quoting Welsh Government eligibility criteria.

In each case they were told there is no appeals process, causing them huge distress and requiring my intervention to have their applications reconsidered.

Further to my previous meeting with residents and questions to Lightsource BP regarding the proposed Plas Power Solar Project near Coedpoeth, I attended a meeting on site with residents and Lightsource BP at which an update was given on the proposals, including site layout. Residents were also given the opportunity to voice their concerns and ask questions, and next steps were discussed.

I was delighted to attend the Annual General Meeting of Dial A Ride (Denbighshire) Ltd at Ffordd Las Community Centre, Rhyl, in this, their Silver Anniversary year.

Established in 1998, Registered Charity Dial A Ride (Denbighshire) Ltd is a well-established Community Transport service that provides accessible, door-to-door transport for residents of all ages in parts of Denbighshire and Conwy who find it difficult or impossible to access conventional public transport, such as disabled people, older people or people who live in rural areas.

As a former Chairman of Mold Round Table, it was a great pleasure to attend their 70th Birthday Dinner.

Other engagements included a Survey Call on behalf of Cancer Research UK.

I was deeply concerned to learn that a patient ended up losing sight in one eye following excessive treatment delays within Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board, and that a woman died after medical notes referring her for further tests were lost by the Health Board.

That these failings happened at a time when the Health Board was being closely overseen by the Welsh Government demonstrates that the escalation framework was not working.

The people of North Wales deserve so much better.

For my help, email or call 0300 200 7219.