Overview

MACS believes in a Scotland without the barriers that isolate and exclude disabled people from making their choice of successful door to door journeys."

The Mobility and Access Committee for Scotland (MACS) was established in 2002 and is an advisory non departmental public body. The Convener and Members are appointed by the Minister for Transport.

MACS was formally constituted under section 72 of the Transport (Scotland) Act 2001. Prior to this advice was provided by the Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee (DPTAC) on a UK wide basis and there was no equivalent Scottish body.

The role of MACS is set out in the Act as being to:

  • consider matters about the needs of disabled persons in connection with transport that the committee think are appropriate
  • advise the Scottish Ministers about those matters that the committee think are appropriate.

The Committee has 15 members with various skills, knowledge and experience gained through their fields of expertise and lived experiences. Members have collective responsibility for the effective operation of MACS, and are led by the Convener.

The Convener gives active and effective leadership, direction, support and guidance to ensure that MACS delivers its functions effectively and efficiently, consistent with Ministers’ priorities.

You can keep up to date with MACS on Twitter.

Partnership for Change

MACS signed up to the Scottish Government’s Partnership for Change and committed to working towards 50/50 by 2020.


Our aims

The Mobility and Access Committee for Scotland (MACS) is a non-departmental advisory public body. Within the founding legislation the Scottish Ministers have defined the overall aim for MACS as follows:

MACS will consider such matters relating to the needs of disabled persons in connection with transport as the Committee think appropriate and give advice to Scottish Ministers.”

In doing so, the Convener aims to ensure, that MACS’ policies and actions supports the wider strategic policies of the Scottish Ministers.  This aligns with the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between MACS and Transport Scotland (TS), our Sponsors. 

The MACS Strategic Remit

  • Give Scottish Ministers advice on aspects of policy, legislation and practice affecting the travel needs of disabled people
  • Take account of the broad views and lived experiences of disabled people when giving advice
  • Encourage awareness amongst disabled people in Scotland of developments which affects their mobility, choices and opportunities
  • Work closely with Scottish Government and ensure our work programme complements the work being undertaken by the Inclusive Mobility and Transport Committee (IMTAC), the Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee (DPTAC), the Scottish Human Rights Commission, the Equality, the and Human Rights Commission and other organisations, voluntary and statutory.
  • Promote the travel needs of disabled people with designers including transport planners and operators so that these are fully taken into account in the development of vehicles and infrastructure and delivery of services.
  • Monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of our work against the above aims and objectives in improving travel opportunities for disabled people in Scotland.

Our vision

MACS believes in a Scotland without the barriers that isolate and exclude disabled people from making their choice of successful door to door journeys.”

This paper provides the Committee’s Strategic Plan for 2021/24. It has been developed based on the Committee’s engagements and discussions over the past year and particularly since lockdown in March 2020.

The Committee has been asked by the Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity, Mr. Michael Matheson MSP, for its views in relation to the progress of the Accessible Travel Framework Annual Delivery Plan and more recently on some elements of the work of the Transport Transition Plan (TTP) Advisory Group and Transport Equalities Network (both chaired by Transport Scotland). The later two groups were formed in response to C-19 to assist with transport transition planning for the stages of the route map out of lock down.

It is anticipated that the work of these groups will feed into the “shifted” starting point of the National Transport Strategy (NTS2). MACS will be represented on this Delivery Board.

MACS responds to requests for advice from Scottish Ministers across portfolio in the recognition of the cross cutting element of transport as an enabler, but also develops its own work programme to scrutinise progress of the Accessible Travel Framework (ATF) Annual Delivery Plan (ADP) and the NTS2. Our work promotes the importance of specific issues in reducing inequalities (a key pillar of the NTS2) to provide a public transport system that aligns with the Triple A check produced by MACS - that public transport is:

  • Available
  • Accessible
  • Affordable for all 

Our high level objectives seek to define the strategic approach MACS will take with its engagement in these specific areas. The time scale for this work is based on the knowledge that a reduction in inequalities will span more than one year though the high level objectives will be revisited annually to sense check against progress, lag areas and needs.

In working to progress the above, MACS will also take into account the commitments made by Scottish Ministers through PfG and the need for inclusive and accessible infrastructures to enabled the first and last mile of journeys (example, from home to bus stop and inter modal connections) as part of the holistic journey.

In order to do its work the Committee routinely engages with external stakeholders to gather evidence, exchange information with our colleagues across the UK, carry out research and publish guidance and reports. The Committee also responds to appropriate consultations to inform policy and service development.

Our values

We are ambitious

We are not afraid to take on difficult issues and speak up in pursuit of positive change. We underpin our approach by drawing from lived experience, listening and responding to the voices of disabled people, continuing our research to build on our existing knowledge and a commitment to learning and continuous improvement.

We connect

We work collaboratively and are informed by the knowledge and experience of those we work for and with.  We are visible, accessible, empathetic and compassionate in our interactions and value quality relationships based on honesty, understanding, support and an appetite and willingness for positive change. We keep disabled people and their needs at the centre of our work.

Our independence is a valuable asset, but we recognise that working with others makes us all stronger.

We are courageous and honest

We say what is right and not what is easy to help to drive progress and positive change. We constructively challenge where needed and work with others to find solutions to make transport and travel more accessible and affordable. We welcome challenge and feedback in order to improve our own work.

We act with integrity and transparency

We take personal and collective responsibility for our work and actions and how we use our resources and limited capacity. We are transparent, trustworthy, consistent, and open about our successes and failings.

Our work

Annual reports

Easy read versions

MACS Code of conduct

MACS Framework Document

MACS strategic plan

MACS Work Plan

Workstreams' workplans

Previous years

Consultation responses

Reports and examples of good practice

MACS Thematic Subgroups

Motability

Transition plan guidance

Transport to Health

2013-2018 MACS archive

Includes annual reports and consultation responses

Meetings

The Mobility and Access Committee (MACS) meet as a committee every month. In addition MACS workstream leads meet on a quarterly basis. The committee also hold regular development and scoping days throughout the year. The dates of these meetings are listed below:

MACS meetings

2023

  • 31 January Board – Legislative Meeting
  • 14 February Leads Meeting
  • 21 March Planning & Strategy
  • 4 April Development Day 1
  • 25 April Board – Legislative Meeting
  • 9 May Leads Meeting
  • 6 June Planning & Strategy Bi Annual Review
  • 11 July Planning & Strategy
  • 25 July Board – Legislative Meeting
  • 8 August Leads Meeting
  • 29 August Development Day 2
  • 10 October Planning & Strategy
  • 24 October Board – Legislative Meeting
  • 14 November Leads Meeting
  • 28 November Scoping Day

2022

2021

Members of the public are welcome to attend MACS meetings. The Secretariat requires a minimum of one week's notice of attendance. Depending on the venue up to 5 places are available. Places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.

If you wish to attend please contact macs@gov.scot or telephone 0131 244 0923.


 

Past minutes of MACS meetings are available via the UK web archive.

View MACS meeting minutes from 2017-18.

Members' biographies

Naghat Ahmed

Naghat AhmedNaghat is a Law and Accountancy graduate and a committee member for the Law Society of Scotland Client Protection Sub-committee.

Her current role at Glasgow City Council includes both programme and project management. She has previously worked on policy and strategy development, equality and diversity, change management, corporate governance and utilising project methodologies. She previously worked in the Commission for Racial Equality and NHS 24, specialising in equality and diversity.

Naghat is a carer for relatives who have disabilities.

Linda Bamford

Photo of Linda Bamford

Linda Bamford is the Convener of the Mobility and Access Committee for Scotland (MACS). Her career background is mainly in NHS Scotland, initially as a psychiatric and general nurse before moving into Para medicine with the Scottish Ambulance Service.  After 13 years as a frontline paramedic in Glasgow Linda moved into management holding various senior management positions within the Scottish Ambulance Service (SAS). Her NHS career spanned over 30 years.

She was heavily involved in Accident and Emergency ambulance service provision in various areas in Scotland (urban, rural and Islands) and led on the previous Patient Transport Service Redesign Strategy.

She is the recipient of two queens medals. One for “Long Service and Good Conduct – Emergency Services”, and the second for “Dedication to the NHS”.

Linda had to take early medical retirement after several lots of surgery for a spinal cord injury.

She is involved in Children’s Hearings Scotland and is also a qualified counsellor.

She was previously the Chair of Spinal Injuries Scotland (SIS), an organisation she got involved with after her spinal cord injury and rehabilitation, and remains one of their Ambassadors.

Linda is the Convener for Disability Equality Scotland, a national Disabled Person’s Organisation (DPO) aiming to achieve full access and inclusion for disabled people in Scotland.

As well has holding her Ministerial appointed as Convener with the Mobility and Access Committee for Scotland (MACS), Linda was recently also appointed by Scottish Ministers as a Commissioner with the new statutory Scottish Poverty and Inequality Commission.

Audrey Birt

Audrey BirtAudrey started her career as a nurse, in particular in community and practice settings. After leaving clinical practice she developed a broad experience in redesign and improving health and social care.

Following this she moved to third sector and has extensive senior executive experience, including being the Director for Scotland of Breakthrough Breast Cancer and the National Director for Diabetes UK Scotland. Audrey was a founder member of the Health and Social Care Alliance and was Chair of the Health and Social Care Alliance for 10 years, where she now is an Associate Director of the Academy; a Programme in the Alliance working with her passion, focussed on transformation of health and social care.

She's a coach and consultant on organisational change as well as a regular blogger on health and disability issues, informed by her own experience. Until her spinal damage she enjoyed walking, especially with her lurcher Cara. She loves to write, in particular with her creative writing group, which meets in galleries around Edinburgh. She has two adult children, step grandchildren, several grandogs and is very delighted to have a grandchild on the way.

Joanne Devitt

Joanne FairweatherJoanne was appointed as a MACS member on 1 October. She has a slight learning disability and is a member of Enable Scotland, an organisation for people with learning disabilities and family carers.

Joanne is involved with ACE and ENABLE Scotland. ACE is an Active Community of Empowered people with learning disabilities, who challenge barriers to an equal society for every person with learning disability in every community across Scotland. She was elected by her local Elgin ACE members to represent their group at the National ACE meetings. Through her lived-in experience and her work with ACE, she has an understanding of local and national issues for disabled people.

A lot of the work Joanne is involved in, both locally in the Moray area and nationally, is about transport for people with a disability. She has represented the views and promoted the needs of people who have disabilities at national and local meetings. These include meetings with Transport Scotland and the Scottish Commission for Learning Disability. As someone who has a learning disability she has first-hand knowledge of the barriers faced when using transport.

Joanne has three sons: Ian, who is 20, Neil, 19 and Keith, 14. Her hobbies include: doing jig-saws, and playing on her tablet, watching TV and going for walks. She enjoys meeting people.

Graham Dunn

Portrait photo of MACS member Graham Dunn

Graham has worked within the third and statutory sectors throughout his career and over the last 16 years within the community and social transport sector. He is now a consultant working with third and statutory sector organisations in relation to Community, Health and Social Transport.

 

 

 

Susan Fulton

Susan FultonSusan has worked in a Local Authority setting for many years and has experience in a number of different roles diversifying into the field of accessibility and inclusive design in 2004.   Susan is passionate about working with others to create and develop environments that are both accessible and inclusive to as many of us as possible and believes that initial engagement with the potential end user at the earliest possible stage is the key to achieving this.

Susan brings her experience both as a Chartered Surveyor and Access Consultant to the Committee coupled with her current and past membership of various groups, panels and Boards working towards accessible and inclusive places and spaces for everyone to access.   

Susan is currently a member of Network Rail’s Built Environment Accessibility Panel, a member of the National Register of Access Consultants Advisory Group and a Director of Disability Equality Scotland.

David Hunter

David HunterDavid is an independent consultant with Not for Profit Planning. He has over thirty years’ experience in a wide variety of voluntary and professional roles promoting accessible transport. He was a full-time volunteer with Manchester Community Transport before becoming the first Director of the London Dial a Ride Users Association. He developed a range of accessible and sustainable transport services for Lothian and Edinburgh Councils for ten years before leading strategy and business planning at the National Library of Scotland.

He has degrees in Politics and Social Policy and was appointed an Associate Research Fellow at Edinburgh Napier University’s Transport Research Institute in 2015.

His interests include social policy research, consumer involvement in public services and in making streets and public places inclusive. He is a member of Living Streets, the Institute of Transport and Logistics and the Scottish Accessible Transport Alliance.

Lynsey Shovlin

Portrait photo of MACS member Lynsey Shovlin.Lynsey Shovlin is a Project Manager for Scottish Enterprise who helps to grow the Scottish economy for the benefit of all. She graduated from Edinburgh Napier University with a BA degree in Festival and Events Management and has worked at several major events coordinating transport services, including London 2012 and the 2014 Ryder Cup in Glasgow. She was one of Scotland's first Customer Service Apprentices for ScotRail and is a regular traveller on public transport, especially rail services.

Heather Still

Portrait photo of MACS member Heather Still.Heather works in health improvement for a Health and Social Care Partnership. She enjoys listening to people and conducting qualitative research into illness and health experiences. She has a congenital lifelong illness which gives her a critical perspective on barriers traditionally unseen. Her empathy and skills in advocacy and research allow her to push lived experiences as a viable perspective for social and health issues in our society.

Hilary Stubbs

Hilary StubbsHilary has had a career spanning almost 40 years in Local Government. She has specialised in the field of business support including HR, Finance, performance management and risk management. On secondment to the Audit Commission, Hilary undertook the role of Inspector in Local Authorities across the UK.

As a Board Member of West Highland College, Hilary chairs the Board’s Audit Committee and hopes to bring her knowledge of Board Governance and audit to this role.

Hilary is a regular traveller on public transport, especially the ferry services. Having worked with young people with special needs she hopes to influence the provision of accessible transport for all sectors of the community. Hilary was County Commissioner for Scouting in County Durham and has been involved in charity work especially with St Cuthbert’s Hospice in Durham and Dorothy’s well project, Tanzania, where she was a founding trustee.

Hilary graduated from St Mary’s College, Durham University and remained in Durham until she retired to Isle of Arran.

Michael Tornow

Michael TornowMichael was appointed in summer 2017 as Senior Health Improvement Officer at NHS Health Scotland and is currently leading portfolios of work on housing and dementia. Before that, he worked for NHS Health Scotland as Health Improvement Officer, supporting the NHS and others to promote physical activity.

Mr Tornow previously worked for NHS Health Scotland’s Equality Team, and before that for the Disability Rights Commission and Glasgow Housing Association. He has a BA Honours Degree in Sociology from Stirling University and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Housing, also from Stirling.

He has a Master’s Degree in Equality and Human Rights from Glasgow University and is currently studying Physical Activity for Health part-time at Edinburgh University.

In 2013, Mr Tornow became a Trustee of the charity, Partners in Advocacy, and is currently a member of the National Institute for Health Care Excellence’s Public Health Advisory Committee, which is updating good practice guidelines on making people more physically active.

Simon Watkins

Portrait photo of MACS member Simon Watkins.Simon Watkins began working with Cumbernauld Corporation before moving to the then Strathclyde Regional Council as a planner. He was seconded for ten years to an EU Programme, assisting local authorities in Central and Eastern Europe, the last two years as Director. Mr Watkins joined the newly-created Scottish Parliament as one of its Clerk Team Leaders and led teams supporting many of the main Committees of the Parliament, including the Health Committee’s handing of the Bill banning smoking in public places.

Secretariat and contact details

A secretariat within Transport Scotland serves MACS. The secretariat is located in Victoria Quay in Edinburgh.

The Secretariat responsibilities include: circulating information to members informing members of consultations updating the MACS website arranging and organising meetings circulating meeting papers supporting the Convener and preparing minutes of meetings processing payments of allowances and expenses co-ordinating appropriate representation by Committee members at external events facilitating media handling through Transport Scotland's Communication Office

The MACS Secretariat can be contacted at:

Transport Scotland
Area 2D Dockside
Victoria Quay
Edinburgh
EH6 6QQ

E-mail: macs@gov.scot

Recruitment

MACS is currently recruiting 3 new members with a closing date of 4 July 2022.

Read more and apply

Videos - What MACS means to its members

Marsali Craig

Update your cookie preferences to view the video.

 

David Hunter

Update your cookie preferences to view the video.