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The Minister for Transport, Graeme Dey MSP, today announced the reappointment of Joanne Devitt and Michael Tornow as Members of the Mobility and Access Committee for Scotland.
Joanne Devitt is involved with ACE and ENABLE Scotland. ACE is an Active Community of Empowered disabled people, who challenge barriers to an equal society for every person with a learning disability in every community across Scotland. She was elected by her local Elgin ACE members to represent their group at national ACE meetings. Through her lived experience and her work with ACE, Ms Devitt has an understanding of local and national issues for disabled people. A lot of the work she is involved in, both locally in the Moray area and nationally, is about transport, especially access to accessible buses, for disabled people. 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.
Michael Tornow is a Senior Health Improvement Officer at NHS Health Scotland and is currently leading portfolios of work on housing and dementia. Prior to that, he worked for NHS Health Scotland as Health Improvement Officer, NHS Health Scotland’s Equality Team, the Disability Rights Commission and Glasgow Housing Association. He has a BA Honours Degree in Sociology and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Housing from Stirling University as well as a Master’s Degree in Equality and Human Rights from Glasgow University. He 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.
Length of term, remuneration and time commitment
The reappointments are for four years and run from 1 October 2021 to 30 September 2025. Members of the Committee receive a fee of £162.00 per day for a time commitment of up to 18 days per year.
The reappointments are regulated by the Ethical Standards Commissioner.
Ms Devitt and Mr Tornow do not hold any other Ministerial appointments.
All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, in accordance with the original Nolan recommendations, there is a requirement for appointees’ political activity within the last five years (if there is any to be declared) to be made public.
Ms Devitt and Mr Tornow have not undertaken any political activity in the last five years.
Mobility and Access Committee for Scotland
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.
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.
MACS believes in a Scotland without the barriers that isolate and exclude disabled people from making their choice of successful door to door journeys.