Taxi law specialist, James Button, has recently released an article regarding Coronavirus and taxis in which he recognises the taxi industry as a vital part of our transport infrastructure. Despite the fact that there is currently a downturn in the use of taxis, they will remain an essential form of transport for those that need to attend hospitals, GPs and shops.
James Button also provides some useful advice for drivers which include:
- It is ultimately the decision of the hackney carriage or private hire vehicle driver to decide if they are happy to continue providing their normal services considering the potential risks.
- If a driver is suffering from the symptom of Coronavirus, a new, continuous cough and/or high fever, they should not continue working and follow government guidelines to self isolate.
- Although it is obviously not possible to disinfect a vehicle after each passenger, frequently cleaning areas which are often touched such as door handles and seat belts will help improve the environmental safety of your vehicle.
Hackney carriage and private hire drivers, whether employees or self employed, must adhere to the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. Both driver and proprietor have a responsibility to ensure, to the best of their ability, that the vehicle is safe.
You can read James Button's full article here. If you look at the conclusions on the last paragraph, page three, Mr Button is openly recognising our industry as being a vital part of the transport infrastructure.
Please find below some really useful information and tips for taxi drivers regarding how a learning disability or autism may affect someone travelling with you and how you can help.
Simple things like being patient, communicating clearly and explaining what is happening on a journey could make a big difference to someone with a learning disability and make a positive impact on their day by helping them travel independently.
Have you seen this open letter written by Jim Thomas from Taxi Leaks? Written to Shaun Bailey, Andrew Boff and Gregg Hands. It is interesting to read that chief magistrate Emma Arbuthnot might be hearing Uber's case! Go and take a read by following the link below:
Ian Hall, Chairman of the SHPHA, is now an Executive Board Member of the National Private Hire Taxi Association (NPHTA). As a leading trade association, the NPHTA can offer support and a range of benefits to all taxi drivers.
This month you will find Ian Hall on page 30 of the January edition of Private Hire Taxi Monthly (PHTM). The magazine which is distributed to taxi drivers throughout the UK contains editorial on a range of taxi trade related issues, the bulk of which is provided by the NPHTA.
In his article, Ian Hall discusses the document: 'Guidance on Determining the Suitability of Applicants and Licensees in the Hackney and Private Hire Trades' which despite only being a guidance document is being adopted by some councils including Southampton City Council. Please see the full article below.
Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash
The Southampton Hackney and Private Hire Association would like to wish all our members a very merry Christmas and a happy, prosperous 2020.
Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash
Uber have lost their licence to operate in London. Transport for London (TfL) have said they will not grant a new licence for Uber due to 'repeated safety failures.' After losing their licence in 2017, Uber have had two extensions, one of which will run out on Monday. Despite Uber having made some positive changes, Transport for London identified a number of situations in which passengers were put at risk including dismissed or suspended drivers being able to make an account on their app.
Director of Licensing at TfL, Helen Chapman, said: "While we recognise Uber had made improvements, it is unacceptable that Uber has allowed passengers to get into minicabs with drivers who are potentially unlicensed and uninsured."
Uber will continue to operate in London while they appeal the decision.
Read the full news story here: BBC News: Uber Loses Licence to Operate in London
Great news, the SHPHA is privileged to now be a full member of the NPHTA. In addition, Ian Hall, Chairman of SHPHA, has the honour of being an executive board member of the NPHTA.
Take a look at the information below to find out what the NPHTA can offer our members and the type of situation they deal with:
Back in June, we wrote about how Southampton City Council Licensing were meeting to consider a document entitled: Safe and Suitable - guidance on determining the suitability of applicants and licensees in the hackney and private hire trades. Please see the earlier blog post below:
Guidance on Suitability Document to be considered by SCC
This document was unfortunately approved by Southampton City Council Licensing committee on the 24th July 2019.
There are paragraphs in this document that paint a very bad picture of hackney carriage and private hire drivers, we urge anybody to read this document in its entirety before their local council approves it.
Image: Quote Catalog
With the 2 month extension of Uber's licence in London which is under review - what can be done about Uber vehicles licensed elsewhere that operate in our city?
Can we use a section of the 1976 Miscellaneous Provision Act, which would stop them?
The SHPHA would like to know your thoughts on this?
Southampton Taxi, Hackney Carriage and Private Hire drivers wanted to join the GMB Southern Region!
GMB is a trade union that has been supporting workers for 130 years! With over 620,000 members, from a whole range of occupation, GMB describe their job as; "to get the best deal possible for you." They aim to do this by, "...being on your side if there is a problem, and always fighting for better when it comes to pay, terms and conditions, a decent work life where workers are safe and treated with dignity, better work/life balance and fairness - making sure working people have their rights at work and are treated fairly and legally when there's a problem."
GMB can be there to support a range of issues in the workplace including disciplinary action, bullying, maternity/paternity rights and ensuring your workplace is safe. 'Reps' or 'Workplace Organisers,' are trained in employment law, health and safely and can even represent people in disciplinary processes. Another membership benefit is access to the GMB's own law firm - Unionline - who offer a completely free service if you need to claim compensation or get legal advice.
The GMB Southern region is one of the 6 regions across the UK which covers Hampshire along with South London, Kent, Dorset, Surrey, Sussex, Berkshire, Wiltshire, South Oxfordshire, the Isle of Wight, Brussels and the Channel Islands.
Find out more about GMB, what they are doing for their members and how to join on their website here: https://www.gmb.org.uk/
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