Petition Keep Patriotic Street car park free for health workers after Lockdown

Having free and available parking in Patriotic Street Car park has significantly reduced the stress and anxiety of all of those working in health. It facilitates working varying shift patterns and reduces the financial burden of significant charges. Also aids safety of those working late shifts.

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Health care workers already working long shifts have to leave early and return later than needed if using public transport. It creates a better work life balance. To aid safety of the public and themselves they don’t not wish to use public transport at this time. Staff working late or on call have to leave work at all times if the day or night, parking close to the hospital aids safety of staff as they can be accompanied by a colleague within a close proximity of the hospital. Other facilities provide free or subsidies to their employees for parking and the cost of around £2,000 a year for parking alone is a significant amount of the annual salary.

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Ministers responded

This response was given on 16 July 2020

Patriotic Street is needed as a public income generating carpark. The free use for health workers was only ever meant to be a temporary measure while the hospital was under pressure from Covid 19.

At the beginning of the pandemic, prior to the construction of the Nightingale Hospital, taking a precautionary approach, Patriotic St Car Park was closed to the public and dedicated solely to the use of Health workers, supporting access to the hospital and reducing the potential for common touch points.
During the early levels of the Safe Exit Strategy, there was no other pressing public need for Patriotic St.
The Car Park has 610 spaces and on request by the Hospital, 500 parking permits were issued to Health workers, in addition to parking bays already reserved for hospital use.
Recent occupancy of the car park by health permit holders has typically been between 300 – 400 vehicles per day, using 50% - 66% of the total capacity of the car park. If continued the cost of this is likely to be in the order of £0.75m per year.
As Jersey descends through the levels of its Safe Exit Strategy, car parks and the town are becoming increasingly busy and it is important for parking to be returned to the public, so that supply can meet demand. Parking charges are being reintroduced so that time limits can be enforced and to ensure a turn-over of spaces. This is important to support the re-opening of the town centre.
Despite being continually approached by special cases of one sort or another, Jersey Car Parks do not provide ‘free’ parking spaces in public car parks, as the remit of the Car Parks Trading account is to provide and maintain adequate parking for the ‘public’ on a ‘first come, first serve’ basis. The revenue generated is needed to fund the maintenance of the Island’s parking infrastructure, concessionary bus fares for persons with disability and sustainable transport and accessibility projects.
Staff benefits are within the remit of the States Employment Board, not Jersey Car Parks.
Should there be a resurgence of CV19 in the Island the situation would be reviewed in the light of Public Health advice, it is likely that Lay-By 7 would be rededicated to Health use at the Nightingale Hospital.

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