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Push for drivers who illegally park in disabled parks to lose demerit points

A nationwide campaign to introduce tougher penalties for drivers caught illegally parking in disability car spots is under way.

Disability advocacy group, No Permit, No Park, is spearheading a push for a demerit point penalty to be added to existing fines for drivers caught in disabled parks without a permit.

Elisha Wright, founder of the group, said she decided to take action after she was unable to park in a disabled spot to go out to dinner with her family.

“Every disability park at the shopping centre that we went to had someone using it without a permit,” she told 3AW’s Tom Elliott.

Ms Wright said the threat of losing your licence would do more to stop people parking in disabled parks than fines do.

“We’ve had fines there for quite a long time and they haven’t done a lot to curb the behaviour,” Ms Wright said.

“Even if it doesn’t happen, what happens when we put this forward is it gets people talking about it, and if they see it as something that could have a demerit point added to it, it makes them think twice.”

Tom Elliott said he agrees there should be tougher fines for those caught illegally parking in spots intended for disabled people.

“I had a grandfather … who was profoundly disabled,” the 3AW Drive host revealed.

“I remember him once complaining, when disabled stickers first appeared. He got upset because he had identified a disabled car park wherever it was that he wanted to go, and when he got there someone was parked in it and they did not have a disabled sticker on their car.

“I remember feeling really sorry for him because for him to walk even a short distance with a stick was really, really difficult.”

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Image: Simon McGill/Getty