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PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2019 12:54 pm 
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This is presumably about adopting the IoL guidelines, but the article doesn't actually state that :?


'10 year bans for cabbies convicted of violence too long', most Wakefield taxi drivers say

https://www.wakefieldexpress.co.uk/news ... -1-9870543

Taxi drivers in Wakefield have claimed automatic 10 year bans for cabbies convicted for a violent offence are too harsh.

The local group representing drivers likened the proposed idea to giving sweet-stealing children the same punishments as "career criminals".

Councils in Leeds, Calderdale, Kirklees, York and Wakefield are considering applying a blanket set of rules to the taxi industry in a bid to avoid big policy differences between local areas.

All five authorities want to impose automatic bans on drivers convicted of a list of offences.

These would include a decade-long licence suspension for any cabbie convicted of a violent crime, and seven years for dishonesty, discrimination and weapon related offences.

However, a majority of those surveyed in Wakefield about the plans said they believed all of those punishments would be too long.

Forty-four of the 50 people who responded to the public consultations were either licensed drivers, a private hire operator or a proprietor. The remaining six were all members of the public.

On the issue of violent offences, 38 of those surveyed said 10 years was too big a punishment.

The Wakefield Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Drivers Association called for a more flexible approach to bans, and said each case should be judged on its merits.

In a letter to the council, the union's consultant Christopher Woodrow said: "Without hesitation, the association support the council in their endeavours to set appropriate standards to regulate all aspects of (trade).

"It is only by setting and maintaining such standards that they will be properly recognised by being the only safe and reliable demand responsive transport service that operates door-to-door, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

"In the circumstances, a person as a juvenile convicted of stealing sweets is not going to be treated the same as a career criminal who has many convictions for shoplifting or the same as a dwelling house burglar or those involved in the Hatton Garden safe deposit burglary, despite all being guilty of offences of dishonesty."

The association has put forward its own counter-proposal, which it says would give councils more flexibility to give punishments befitting of the crime, and offers convicted drivers the chance for rehabilitation.

The council responded to the letter in detail, saying that the proposals required each case to be "treated on its own merits".

The survey did indicate however, that drivers and the public supported indefinite bans for those convicted of exploitation, sexual offences and causing death or serious injury.

A report going before Wakefield councillors next week has indicated the proposed bans should be adopted in full, and noted that a number of the responses from people in the district were "at odds with wider regional opinion".

It added that West Yorkshire Police's child sexual exploitation team were in support of the plans, as well as the NHS' safeguarding children unit.


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2019 4:27 pm 
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Location: Stamford Britains prettiest town till SKDC ruined it
Not so sure I agree with that it demonstrates that they are a risk

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2019 7:25 pm 
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Quote:
The local group representing drivers likened the proposed idea to giving sweet-stealing children the same punishments as "career criminals".

Nonsense, and a silly comparison.

Quote:
The Wakefield Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Drivers Association called for a more flexible approach to bans, and said each case should be judged on its merits.

Can't argue with that though.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 18, 2019 8:14 pm 
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New rules for Wakefield taxi drivers approved in bid to make industry safer

https://www.wakefieldexpress.co.uk/news ... -1-9884807

Image
Image: Wakefield Express

Tight new rules for the taxi industry in Wakefield, including automatic bans for drivers convicted of certain offences, will come into force in September.

The move is designed to bring councils across West Yorkshire and York in line with each other on standards, in a bid to dissuade drivers getting their licence from one authority and then working in another area.

A local group representing around 600 taxi drivers was concerned about the bans, and likened the proposals to treating "sweet-stealing children" the same as "career criminals".

They said there should be more focus on rehabilitating offending drivers and that each case should be treated on its individual merits.

But public consultations in other parts of the region indicated a more favourable view to the proposals.

And Wakefield Council said that the proposals still offered flexibility when considering sanctions against convicted drivers.

On Wednesday the authority's licensing committee was told that the new rules were in line with guidance published by the Institute of Licensing last year.

Council officer Helen Earnshaw said: "If we didn't adopt this, we'd have to show our reasons why to the government.

"I think it's recognised that there needs to be more harmonisation on taxi policy across the country, so drivers won't just go to one authority (for a licence) that might have lesser standards.

"The new policy categorises offences. The more offences you try to list you often find there's one that's not been listed, and that can cause problems."

Cabbies who've spent more than three months out of the UK in the past three years will now also need to produce a "certificate of good conduct" from the country they've lived in to obtain or keep a licence.

In one change from the original proposals, drivers convicted of a minor road offence would have to wait three years before reapplying for their licence, rather than five.

Those who use a mobile phone while driving however, will still be banned for five years.

Ms Earnshaw added: "We would take action if someone had seven points or more on their driving licence.

"So if they've been caught speeding twice and got six points, they wouldn't be caught out."

Councillors voted to approve the new measures but agreed to delay implementing them until September 1 to allow time for the changes to be communicated.

Length of bans for taxi drivers after single conviction

Crimes resulting in death of another person - Lifelong ban (any application automatically refused)

Exploitation - Lifelong ban

Violence (including arson, riot, terrorism offences, harassment, common assault and criminal damage) - 10 years

Possession of a weapon or any other weapon related offence - 7 years

Sex and indecency offences - Lifelong ban

Dishonesty - 7 years

Drugs supply - 10 years

Drugs use - 5 years

Discrimination - 7 years

Drink driving/driving under the influence of drugs - 7 years

Driving while using handheld mobile phone or other handheld device - 5 years

Minor traffic or vehicle related offences - 3 years

Major traffic or vehicle related offences - 7 years

Vehicle use offences - 7 years


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 18, 2019 8:16 pm 
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Quote:
Council officer Helen Earnshaw said: "If we didn't adopt this, we'd have to show our reasons why to the government."


Why's that? :-s

Quote:
Violence (including arson, riot, terrorism offences, harassment, common assault and criminal damage) - 10 years


Nothing crude about that at all [-(


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 18, 2019 9:05 pm 
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Quote:
In one change from the original proposals, drivers convicted of a minor road offence would have to wait three years before reapplying for their licence, rather than five.

Madness.

Idiots making idiotic rules.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 18, 2019 9:08 pm 
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StuartW wrote:
Quote:
Violence (including arson, riot, terrorism offences, harassment, common assault and criminal damage) - 10 years


Nothing crude about that at all [-(

10 year ban for criminal damage. FFS. ](*,)

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 03, 2022 5:09 pm 
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Almost a carbon copy of the Huddersfield/Kirklees piece today in another thread.

Think they have a good case here about the crude and draconian nature of all this, particularly in view of the earlier article in this thread above.

But don't think playing the race card will get them very far.

And, once again, the usual council comments about the WDA. They seem to think there should only be one association or union representing the trade. Obviously makes things easier for them, but I'd imagine a council covering a population of 300,000 (and presumably more than one thousand HCDs and PHDs) might expect to deal with several representative groups [-(


Angry Wakefield taxi drivers protest against new rules that could see them lose licences

https://www.examinerlive.co.uk/news/wes ... t-23276416

The rules have already prompted protests and strikes in Huddersfield and Leeds

Taxi drivers protested furiously outside Wakefield Town Hall in a row over rules enforced by the district council.

Around two dozen drivers from the Wakefield Drivers Association (WDA) gathered outside the Wood Street building on Wednesday lunchtime and called on senior councillors to resign.

A small police presence attended to observe what was a peaceful protest.

Cabbies claim drivers who rack up more than six points on their licence in three years are facing lengthy bans from the trade because of Wakefield Council’s “unfair” suitability policy.

The council doesn’t recognise the WDA, however, and says all its rules are in place to keep the travelling public safe.

The union it does recognise, the Wakefield Private Hire and Hackney Carriage Drivers Association (WDHCPCA), did not support the strike, in a repeat of their stance from July, when the WDA first protested.

Speaking angrily through a megaphone on the Town Hall steps, WDA president Yasar Ahmed said: “The council has made itself very, very clear. They’re not going to talk to (us).

“If the officers are running this council, then this council should resign.

“These unelected officers should not be running the council.

“In the last two years they haven’t given us one meeting.

“They’re not going to talk to us. How dare you?! How dare you?!”

“We’re being treated like second-class citizens.”

Similar protests have also been held in Huddersfield and in Leeds, where a strike over a weekend prompted fury as people were left stranded after nights out in the city centre.

Wakefield East councillor Akef Akbar attended the protest and also made a brief speech in support of the drivers.

He also claimed the council’s refusal to talk to the WDA was because of race and amounted to “discrimination”.

The council strongly denies that suggestion

Speaking to the LDRS later, Coun Akbar said: “Nobody’s saying that drivers shouldn’t be banned for serious offences – assaults and sexual offences – the public needs to be protected.

“However, when you’re talking about someone on six points potentially facing losing their livelihood – there needs to be justice and punishment, but there also needs to be rehabilitation as well.

“For a driver that spends 12 to 15 hours a day on the road, they might do 35 miles per hour in a 30 miles per hour zone once, and that’s three points.

“It’s not good enough to say they’re only recognising one union.

“The reason I say it’s about race is because more than 90 per cent of drivers come from a Pakistani background.

“Their voices are not being heard and they’re being unfairly discriminated against.

“Whether there’s one union or 10 unions, no solution’s been found. They’ve been ping-ponging over this for years.”

Glynn Humphries, the council’s corporate director for communities, said: “We are committed to working with the trade and championing passenger safety that protects the health and wellbeing of the travelling public and the council’s policies are designed to support this.

“The Wakefield District Private Hire and Hackney Carriage Association, who represent the majority of drivers in the district, have informed the council they do not support the demonstration and will not be participating.”

On Coun Akbar’s comments specifically, Mr Humphries’ colleague Antony Sadler responded: “We do not discriminate against anyone on racial or any other grounds.

“These policies are aimed at protecting the travelling public and all drivers and operators are required to comply with these policies, irrespective of race.”


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 03, 2022 5:10 pm 
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WDA rep wrote:
“For a driver that spends 12 to 15 hours a day on the road, they might do 35 miles per hour in a 30 miles per hour zone once, and that’s three points."

Fair point about the speeding angle, but... ](*,)


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 20, 2022 10:04 am 
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Note this is a news release on the GMB's website, so to that degree might be regarded as union propaganda. And, of course, the council adopting the 'charter' might be little more than PR and glad-handing towards the GMB and the trade. Whether in reality it means anything, who knows? :?

Looks quite flash on the GMB's fancy pants website, so to that extent I almost put it in a new thread, but in reality it's probably best just added to this one...


New Wakefield taxi charter will improve transport

https://www.gmb.org.uk/news/new-wakefie ... -transport

A new taxi charter adopted by Wakefield Council will pave the way for better transport in the city, says GMB Union.

The charter received national endorsement at GMB’s congress in Harrogate this week.

GMB has now agreed with Wakefield Council to build a new consultation framework for drivers enabling the union and the local authority to review all licensing policy.

Drivers are concerned about a new licensing suitability and conviction policy that came into force across the entire Yorkshire region in 2020 – but the effects of which were only felt now business as picked up pos-pandemic,

Changes included much stricter punishments for drivers for minor offences - while drivers accept the need to improve passenger safety, there was a lot of criticism about the lack of consultation and the disproportionate and unfair way sanctions were set out.

Peter Davies, GMB Senior Organiser, said:

“Our members are always keen to improve taxi services and especially when it comes to the safety of their passengers.

“That’s why we have set out a new taxi charter to help us work with councils to achieve that in a constructive way that takes the welfare and living standards of drivers into full account too.

“But all improvements must be agreed, driver input is vital in that process, as is the public’s.

“That's been somewhat lacking in the past three years and this new agreement goes a long way to putting that right.

“I want to extend my appreciation to Wakefield Council as they become the first local authority to endorse the charter and agree full policy reviews this year, something the GMB are now asking for in all Yorkshire local authorities.”


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