Get Heard Scotland: Making Scotland’s transport system work for everyone


Poverty can be solved by boosting incomes and reducing costs, and transport is vital in supporting efforts to do both. Recognised by Every Child, Every Chance – the Scottish Government’s delivery plan for tackling child poverty – as a key part of efforts to meet poverty reduction targets set by the Child Poverty Act, transport helps to enable access to employment opportunities, education, and essential services.

Yet too often, people on low incomes are prevented from accessing these opportunities and services due to affordability and availability issues; something that can both contribute towards and intensify the experience of poverty. Indeed, recent research has found that over 1 million people in Scotland were living in areas at high risk of ‘transport poverty’.

As part of Get Heard Scotland, the Poverty Alliance have been asking what can be done to help improve transport in Scotland to ensure that everybody can access it when needed. This event will allow us to discuss the links between transport and poverty and look at where improvements can be made at the local and national levels. The discussions at the event will be fed into the development of the Scottish Government’s new Transport Strategy.

This event is open to all, but places are very limited. We intend to balance participation between those with direct experience of the issues, campaigners and voluntary groups, and policy makers. All registrations are therefore subject to change. We will reimburse travel and care costs for people living on low incomes.

Draft Agenda

9.30 Registration

10.00 Introduction and welcome

Professor John McKenrick, Scottish Poverty and Inequality Research Unit

10.10 Making Transport Work for Us

Community Members speak

10.30 Poverty, Inequality and Scotland’s Transport System: Why it matters to Scottish Government

Michael Matheson MSP, (invited)

Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity

11.00 Coffee break

11.15 Transport and poverty: Some Key Issues

Claire Daly, Sustrans Scotland (invited) &

Emma Congreve, Joseph Rowntree Foundation (invited)

11.35 Get Heard discussions: What we’ve learned about transport

Peter Kelly, Poverty Alliance

11.45 Group discussions on transport and poverty

  • What is working?
  • What isn’t?
  • What needs to change?

12.40 Group feedback

12.55 Summary and closing remarks

Professor John McKenrick, Scottish Poverty and Inequality Research Unit

13.00 Lunch and Close

This event is part of the Get Heard Scotland programme, which is funded by the Scottish Government.