This site and the spending challenge site have more than adaquately revealed that the general public do not undrestand or have sufficient knowledge of the motability scheme.
This is evident in crass comments about 'Free cars' and the type of cars available.
It is also evident in the fact that none of the posters mention the fact that Motability is NOT a government department and is not funded by the government! They also fail to notice that the main gainers in this scheme are the banks – they make a hefty profit from the schemes!
So we need to educate the public to the facts!
1)The cars are NOT free.
2)Those who use the scheme PAY for their cars – they lease the cars.
3) They type of car they choose depends on their needs. They may need a larger car to fit a wheelchair and other equipment in. They may need a 'higher' car such as an MPV or people carrier to combine wheelchair space and ability to get in and out of the vehicle.
4) More expensive cars mean that the disabled person is paying an advance payment (non refundable) to cover the cost difference.
5) Advance payments are calculated according to the projected sale price that motability will recoup when the car is sold at the end of the lease period – the disabled person does not receive any of the money recouped.
6)Nil advance payment is usually applied to smaller and cheaper cars – with some car manufacturers occasionally having 'special offers' on larger vehicles which reduces the advance payment for a short period of time – this is a marketting policy from the manufacturer who wants more motability customers.
7) all the stories posted on here and on SC about people conning the system are rooted in jealousy of the cars – without considering the disability and the pain and hassle that goes with it.
So we need more education of the public on the reality of motability – this will reduce the harrasment of disabled people and save the public from making crass statements and accusations which only embarress them through their own lack of knowledge.
This could easily be achieved by educating the media so that they get their facts right and requiring every newspaper (national and local) to print a prominent full page explanation of the FACTS. (written by motability and approved by a representative group of their paying customers). Equally any television program that 'investigates' motability abuses should be required to include an explanation of the facts in relation to the workings of the scheme. Additionally car manufacturers and dealers should have to follow rules regarding motability advertising – their adverts should make it clear that disabled people PAY for their cars rather than creating the illusion that the cars are free when they are not.
Why is this idea important?
It would serve two main purposes.
1) Disabled people would encounter less spite and harrassment.
2)The public in general would be better informed and less likely to experience stress through the jealousy that their misunderstanding of the scheme generates.