Better Buses News
Call for a Scotland-wide bus passenger survey
Patrick is calling for a Scotland-wide bus passenger survey to provide information on bus company performance and is looking for cross-party support.
He has tabled a motion in the Parliament and needs your help in getting in touch with your MSPs to ask them to support it.
A passenger survey will provide a starting point for improvements, and a way to compare the performance of companies.
In answers to Parliamentary Questions tabled by Patrick, the Minister made it clear that data on bus punctuality is not gathered by the Government and that no data is broken down by bus operators so that comparisons in performance can be made.
In England and Wales Passenger focus has been undertaking wide scale surveys of bus passengers, comparing performance by different companies and in different areas. Patrick’s motion calls for an equivalent tool for improving our bus services in Scotland. This survey isn’t a magic bullet for improving the buses, but would enable Scotland’s passengers to compare the performance of their bus company with those in other places and to act as a benchmark from which to measure improvements.
Scotland’s rail passengers already benefit from regular performance reviews, via the Passenger Focus rail surveys, and Patrick is seeking support from MSPs across the Parliament for his motion. Why not get in touch with your own MSPs to ask them to support the motion? You can find out who your MSPs are and email them from writetothem.com
S4M-02873 Patrick Harvie (Scottish Green Party): That the Parliament acknowledges the frustration of bus passengers when services do not run to time; understands that the Scottish Government neither gathers information relating to bus punctuality nor data that differentiate between different operators; notes that Passenger Focus has both a statutory remit for bus users in England outside London and provides what it considers quality research data on buses by city, region and operator; understands that, although Passenger Focus has no statutory remit in Wales, it has carried out a bus survey for the Welsh Assembly Government using the same methodology as in England, and calls on the Scottish Government to commission and fully fund a Scotland-wide bus survey using the Passenger Focus methodology to enable passengers to compare the performance of their bus operators with those in other places and to act as a benchmark from which improvements can be measured.
As of 21 June this motion has been signed by: Alison Johnstone, Hanzala Malik, Iain Gray, Jackie Baillie, Hugh Henry, Drew Smith, Sarah Boyack, Margaret McCulloch and Siobhan McMahon , Rhoda Grant, Margaret Mitchell, John Park, James Kelly and Mark Griffin but we need more support. Ask your MSP why they haven’t signed it.
Ronnie Park, the FirstGlasgow bus chief also supports this proposal, as detailsed in a letter he sent Patrick on 13 June.