Friday, May 20, 2016

The Truth, The Whole Truth, And Nothing Like The Truth.... By Jim Thomas

While the LTDA are busy braking arms, slapping themselves on the back, in aid of the next Taxi magazine headline....



Taxi Leaks would like to set the record straight by thanking Danny Henderson who made the original FOI request on 11 Fed 2016 to the Met Police. 
Freedom of Information Request Reference 


We would also like to thank Angela Clarkson and Heather Rawlings from their time and effort spent, bringing this FOI request to the attention of the national press.

We should also like to thank Danny Sullivan for an earlier FOI request which produced this graph showing that more TfL licensed minicab drivers were involved in sexual assaults and rapes than unlicensed fake drivers.

But... Bob, Steve, Richard...don't let he truth get in the way of a good story....again.

FROM THE PAPERS:

IN THE SUN


UBER drivers are accused of rape or sex attacks on customers nearly three times a month in London.
They were suspects in 32 cases reported by female passengers in the capital across 12 months. 
The tap-and-ride app, which now operates in 20 UK cities, claims to be the “safest ride on the road”.
(Funny, not a word about the AddVan here!)

IN THE MIRROR


Female passengers have made 32 claims of rape or sexual assault against Uber drivers in London over the past 12 months. 

The Metropolitan Police Service and West Yorkshire Police released information on reports relating to the minicab app after The Sun requested information from 14 police forces. 

West Yorkshire Police received four reports of serious sex assaults and eight violent incidents from February 2015 to February this year.

The Met had recorded 154 allegations including minicabs, private chauffeurs and even rickshaw riders.
(Nothing again about the AddVan!)

IN THE INDEPENDENT


 Uber drivers are accused of sexually assaulting or raping customers almost three times a month, according to new figures which have outraged rape campaigners.

Freedom of Information data obtained by The Sun newspaper revealed 32 assault claims were made against employees of the taxi-hailing app in London over the past twelve months, equal to one every eleven days.
(Again, not a word about the AddVan!)


What ever next: 
They might even claim the kudos for sorting out St Pancras and not even mention the week long demonstrations organised by Dads Defending Daughters and attended by drivers from every org. Oops, too late...they already have. 

Are these people really worth this amount of money? ... Letter To Taxi Leaks

Have a quick perusal of the' tfl organisational chart 2014 /15 'on google and see what these 'executives' earn, it will make your hair stand on end and raise your blood pressure, they are phenomenal figures. 


            >To Download Chart, Click Here<

These people are simply not worth the vast sums of money they are being paid. It's heart breaking to see the depths this city has fallen to when you attempt a journey by road. 

In 29 years I have never experienced such interminable road congestion as now. So many roads have been closed from the city westwards to soho, Mayfair and beyond. 

The job of cab driving has been thoroughly deskilled. Traffic is being funnelled down main routes, those little streets to the side, a form of pressure relief valve are closed. As difficult as the App companies make life for the established business that we try and run, the real latent threat is the tfl policy of shutting down roads/routes. 


They are like veins that carry blood. 
They are either being removed from usage or narrowed, ie parliament sq, Farringdon road Victoria embankment and so on. 

Truthfully,knowing what you do regarding the geography of London, a cab wouldn't be your instinctive choice as a means of transport if you had to get somewhere. 

Why couldn't the LTDA, LCDC, RMT and god knows how many other trade reps have argued for us to be given access from Oxford st into soho st, a small but significant measure. 
Open up Rupert St from Brewer St into Winnett St into Wardour st, for 'Cabs Only'.

A job from Great Marlborough street to Covent Garden can literally cost someone an arm and a leg, it's embarrassing! 

This Brown character has a shinny cv and yet what concrete proposals for improvement has he got. This dystopian existence we all now suffer has occurred on his watch, the mans a clown. 

A well remunerated clown at that. 

Regards Rob.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

United Trade Group Snubs Meeting With TfL Over Daniels Attendance.


It's been alleged that yesterday, the LCDC along with other invited trade organisations who make up the exclusive united trade group (UTG), snubbed the the proposed meeting with TfL's Mike Brown under the new Mayor. 

Reason being, the TfL commissioner allegedly insisted that Leon Daniels be present.

Below is the response from TfL's Mike Brown, in regards to the trade's snub.


Sadiq Khan who has been heavily lobbied by most of the taxi organisations, and other close and trusted trade supporters, is well versed of the problems within London's taxi industry. It is believed that once he has his feet under the table and fairly reviewed the structure and processes of the trade that changes will be introduced.

Action For Cabbies Update : TfL Formally Served.

 
Action for Cabbies wholly supports and agrees that all taxis should accept credit cards and that passengers are able to pay fares by cards as well as cash; what we do not support is the ban on transaction surcharges and the surcharges being levied against drivers. 

If card payments become as popular as TfL suggest they will be, TfL’s ban is likely to cause annual losses to the taxi industry of over £9m a year, losses the industry can ill afford when it is under unprecedented competition from  minicabs. 

Therefore, Action for Cabbies has funded a claim brought by driver, Mr James Thomas, for a judicial review of TfL’s decision to ban drivers from passing on transaction fees to passengers where they are paying by card. 
The claim was formally served on TfL yesterday, 17 May 2016. 

It is our view – and the view of Rosenblatt (Jim’s lawyers)  - that TfL’s ban is both unfair and irrational. 

A much fairer solution, and one supported by the majority of all respondents during TfL’s 2015 consultation, would have been for TfL to have allowed drivers to charge a surcharge which reflects their transaction fees, but no more than these fees incurred by the driver.  

We very much hope that Jim’s claim will encourage TfL to review its decision and adopt this fairer solution.

Thank you for your continued support, stronger together.
Action for Cabbies.

Editorial Comment:
Of course the CC mandate is a great idea, it brings us inline with most of our competitors. But at the same time, we can't have an open ended agreement where equipment suppliers can raise the odds ever time the opportunity presents itself. 

If the percentage of card users rises in line with TfL's expectations, at present rates, the trade will lose over £9m a year. If the surcharge should rise as contracts come up for renewals, the trade could possibly be losing £18m every year.

It should be left to individual drivers, to decide whether they charge the passenger or not. If using more economical equipment from companies such as iZettle, PayPal or CabApp, all set at around 2.75%, some drivers will feel they can absorb the charge.

But many drivers feel 4-5% plus a 20p transaction charge is an unwelcome expense, which they should be able to claim back from passengers, using their facility. 

The trade has to protect itself and should never agree to any arrangements which may put its future in a precarious position.


Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Time For Transparency...by I'm Spartacus


We all know how much Leon Daniels earns, what his benefits are and hopefully a full record of his dinners and lunches provided by those who he meets with.


Is it now time for our trade leaders to follow suit? After  all they should have nothing to hide from their memberships nor should they want to.

We know how much Mick Cash (RMT) is paid and what his benefits are, the same applies to  Len McCluskey of UNITE.

So in the words of Delia Smith 'let's be 'avin you' Bob, Steve, Grant, Len & co.

1. How much are you paid by your organisation as a salary or stand down pay?

2. Declare any other benefits such as cars, health schemes, low or zero rental cabs, garage servicing etc?

3. Do you receive any other income from cab related activities such as marshalling, TfL boards and committees, radio circuits etc?

Let's be clear no one is accusing or inferring anything but in these difficult times we need to be sure those who speak for many of us are really doing just that rather than ensuring some kind of 'status quo' is maintained.

So nothing to lose and a lot in reputation to enhance, I am sure the editor of this blog and others, the trade press or LTR will,be happy to broadcast anything you release.

We all know how much to the meter a cab driver takes, it laid down in law.

All is for the best in the best of all possible worlds.

I'm Spartacus

LTDA Taxi House 18th May 2016 : Drivers Turn Out To Support Sean Day.

Taxi House Woodfield road. Drivers support Sean Paul Day at complaint hearing.

         Support from rank and file drivers

This afternoon, Sean Paul Day appeared before a complaints committee at Taxi house, accused of lying about the LTDA's JR bid, they claim was running in parallel with the Action For Cabbies Fundraising campaign.


Drivers turned out to support Sean and the forecourt of Taxi house soon filled to over capacity, with approximately another 50-60 Taxis queuing in Woodfield Road. 


Sean faced the committee accompanied by Marc Turner who was not allowed to speak. But Marc was allowed to read a prepared statement in support of Sean, at the end of the meeting. 
The hearing lasted just over an hour.

          Support from #SaveTaxis group.

Sean was seen leaving the building with supporters, shown to the door by Bob Oddy. 


We asked Sean of the outcome and it appears no decision on his future as an LTDA member was made today. He has been told he will be contacted by mail and informed of the committee's decision in due course ( much in the same way they expelled Mike Calvey). 

Below, Oddy is quizzed,  'where has the money gone Bob?'


...

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

London Taxi Drivers Fund For Underprivileged Children : London's Finest, Take 200 Kids To Woburn Safari Park

    ITS NOT ALL GLOOM AND DOOM.  


Another story you won't see in the press today....or on any of the mainstream TV news broadcasts

Words cannot express the the pride I feel in my fellow cabbies and the members of the LTDFUC, who again this morning, gave up their days work to take 200 kids for a fun packed trip to Woburn Safari Park

Just one of the reasons our taxi trade in London, is the envy of the World. 

Perhaps somebody should tell Dave, George, TFL and the media!!!!!!

London's finest, waiting for the children to arrive

   Heading home, after a great day out 


Letter To Baroness Kramer, From Chair Of ALPHA : Re The Taxi Deregulation Act 2015

For those unaware, a quick reminder of who Baroness Kramer is. 


Susan Veronica Kramer, Baroness Kramer, (née Richards; born Holdorn London, 21 July 1950) is a Liberal Democrat politician. 
Member of Parliament, Richmond Park, from 2005 to 2010.
Prior to that having a career in infrastructure finance and in 2000 having been a candidate in the London Mayoral Ellection.

Lady Kramer began her career in finance. She rose to become a Vice-President of Citibank in Chicago. She and her late husband then set up Infrastructure Capital Partners, a firm which advises on infrastructure projects, primarily in Central and Eastern Europe. Its alleged she still remains a director of the firm.

As patron of the Suzy Lamplugh Trust Lady Kramer should be well aware of the recent record high number of sexual assaults recorded in London minicabs made public recently by Freedom of Information Request to the Met Police.

See previous Taxi Leaks article about Baroness Kramer and Taxi and Private Hire deregulation 2014.  >CLICK HERE<.

Letter below is from Lee Ward Chair of ALPHA.

Dear Lady Kramer

After reading the arguments for and against the deregulation of the taxi industry and more importantly the cross border hiring or sub contracting, I wish to ask you what the intention of this amendment was.

i have read the notes from both the House of Commons and the House of Lords on this matter and I have taken note of the examples that you gave during this debate. My question is this;

Did the change in law take into account that a company such as Uber (but other companies now do the same) take a booking in, for example my home town of Sheffield, and give it to the nearest Uber driver that is vacant and waiting for a job regardless of the authority that this said driver is licensed by, or was it so that a company could take a booking because the person booking trusted that company and was happy for that company to deal with such booking when the person was in an area that the trusted company did not have any vehicles or actually covered work wise?

You see the problem is, that we as a trade see a massive loophole within the industry, one that puts serious issues on public safety. As I have referred to just now, Uber take a booking and pass it to the nearest driver regardless of how many drivers are sat waiting to take work that are licensed in the area. These vehicles can not be stopped and checked or even questioned by the local authority in the area that they are working in, how can we ensure that the person driving is the person licensed and insured? we can not.

I now make reference to your speech within the House with regards to this issue as follows;

"I was in Gloucestershire and going to visit an elderly friend in a nursing home. I got to the station and there was no one around. I looked at the board and started calling taxi firms and car hire firms and not one could supply a car."

As the then Minister for Transport, I can not understand why you did not look at the place that this train station was and not pre empt any transport issues that you may encounter.

"We are often concerned about young people out late at night who try to find a taxi to take them home safely. In that situation, we do not want them having to track down one company after another. They should be able to call an operator who they have confidence in who can find them a taxi, even if it is subcontracted from out of area."

Does this really happen now, where the company that they book with sends a vehicle licensed sometimes up to 200 mile away to collect them and take them to their destination (who can not be spot checked by the local licensing officers), while locally licensed drivers are sat about waiting for a job?
 
"Most car hire companies have a limited number of wheelchair-accessible vehicles and there may be circumstances where a disabled person needs to travel in a particular kind of vehicle. It is all very well to say that disabled people need to make advance bookings, but I want people with disabilities to be able to live their lives as freely as the rest of us can and not always have to think about things in advance—or, frankly, have to do without. We have a mechanism here which gives an operator the scope to reach out of area and subcontract to someone else who has a wheelchair-accessible vehicle to meet a need. That is exceedingly beneficial."

Does Uber even have wheelchair access vehicles, let alone take advance bookings for these people?

"I want to make it clear that the initial operator who takes a call and makes a booking remains liable to the passenger who made the booking. He is the person with whom the contract has been established. If someone chooses to call a particular operator, that operator retains the liability for the subcontractor, so the terms and conditions, the recording of the booking and the fare, if it has been agreed, all remain with the operator who the customer has contacted."

I will now show you what Uber's Terms and Conditions are with regards to their acceptance of liability for sub contracting bookings (even if they do sub contract to themselves)

UBER MAKES NO REPRESENTATION, WARRANTY, OR GUARANTEE REGARDING THE RELIABILITY, TIMELINESS, QUALITY, SUITABILITY OR AVAILABILITY OF THE SERVICES OR ANY SERVICES OR GOODS REQUESTED THROUGH THE USE OF THE SERVICES, OR THAT THE SERVICES WILL BE UNINTERRUPTED OR ERROR-FREE. UBER DOES NOT GUARANTEE THE QUALITY, SUITABILITY, SAFETY OR ABILITY OF THIRD PARTY PROVIDERS.

I guess they think otherwise, dont you?

This email could go on for much longer, but I think I will leave you with this summery to ponder before you reply.

The Deregulation Act of 2015 has done nothing for the Private Hire industry across the UK, if anywhere. The reasons and arguments from both the House of Commons and the House of Lords are so flawed that it is quite apparent that no imput from the industry was taken into account, or even requested.

My final request from yourself is that you reply to this email with good faith so that I can post your reply to the drivers (as I will post this email awaiting your reply) who work long and hard to make a living across this country at hours that people seldom relate to, ensuring that the public of this great country get home safe and soundly.

Yours sincerely

   Lee Ward

   ALPHA Chairman

Monday, May 16, 2016

New Mercedes Vito Euro 6 To Preview 18-19th May 2016, At MK Dons Stadium

Breaking News Today, there is to be a preview of the new Mercedes Vito Taxi, Euro 6 at the PHTM show in milton keynes on 18th and 19th of May at MK Dons stadium.

Also, trade reps from around the country will be meeting with Mercedes-Benz & Penso on the 23rd May 2016, to further discuss the new Vito taxi available soon.

There are strong rumours that this vehicle will be priced very close to LTI's TX4 euro 6 model.

Here is a sneak view of the new model.



Looks very nice, but with the trades future looking bleaker as the weeks roll on, will drivers be able to make this type of investment in a new vehicle.


Signs Installed Across Birmingham City Centre To Warn Illegal Minicab drivers

 

"We would always urge passengers to book their journey or make sure they use a properly licensed cab." 

– ENFORCEMENT OFFICER PC DAVE HUMPHERSON, FROM WEST MIDLANDS POLICE

Minicab drivers who operate illegally in Birmingham are being warned they will be caught and face prosecution.

New signs have been installed across Birmingham's city centre, reminding minicab drivers against breaking the law by touting for on-street business, a specific offence known in the trade as ’plying.'

Almost 50 rogue drivers were found illegally picking up people in the city during the last 18 months as part of a crackdown.

Warning signs informing plyers  CCTV is in operation have been erected around the city centre. The 100 reflective signs have been put near prominent entertainment spots including: 

  • Broad Street
  • Hurst Street 
  • Ladywell Walk

Offenders face penalty points, hefty court fines and being struck off the council’s books.

West Midlands Police works in partnership with Birmingham City Council’s licensing team to tackle illegal plying for hire.

People who accept unbooked lifts from private hire drivers are not insured in the event of being injured in an accident; only Hackney Carriage vehicles can take fares without being booked in advance


These signs leave no excuses for rogue drivers, if they illegally ply for hire they will be caught.

The majority operate legitimately but there are those who seek to take advantage and make extra cash. Some drivers will use weak excuses such as giving a friend a lift home yet are unable to provide their name or address.

We have seen drivers given six to nine points on their licence along with some drivers being disqualified from driving. One driver was left with a court bill of £1,800. 

Leon Daniels Calls Urgent Meeting With Taxi Trade Orgs.


We have received information, from an extremely reliable source, that Leon Daniels is calling to be allowed to attend meeting with all trade orgs, when they meet the new mayor later this week! 

Our source states all trade orgs, but what they actually mean is, only those trade orgs whom TfL allow to sit at their table. 
The UCG, RMT, HADTU, and the LSTC Suburban Drivers Coalition, of course are excluded. 

There has been a wealth of information made public which appears to have put Managing Director Leon Daniels' future with TfL in a precarious position. 
We applaud the LCDC for publishing the Ubergate Emails. 
The fact that Daniels has asked to attend the meeting looks to all intent and purpose to be an eleventh hour bid to pour calming oil on the troubled waters. 

Let's hope that if this meeting goes ahead, those attending will insist that minutes of this meeting and any future meeting with TfL be made available to the whole trade, soon after the meeting. 

Drivers from all orgs and unions are calling for the current unfair exclusions, to be dropped as soon as possible by new Mayor Sadiq Khan. For too long, TfL officials have been able to choose which factions of the trade they meet, with more militant groups left out in the cold. 

Inclusion to the Cabbies Cabinet has been used as a bargaining tool and held over the heads of the United trade group members for too long. This fact alone, seemingly gives TfL the edge at face to face, in camera consultations.

Breaking News:
It's now been confirmed that the meeting between the trade and the new Mayor has been scheduled for Wednesday. More news as we get it.

News just in:

We've been told that the Taxi trade's meeting with Sadiq Khan and Mike Brown was initiated by TfL. Apparently, invitations went out three weeks ago.

A year and a half ago, the GLA published the Future Proof Report.
Recommendation 18 stated:
By March 2015, TfL should revise its driver engagement activity to ensure that it is as widely representative as possible, and improve the transparency of taxi and private hire policy and decision making processes by routinely publishing the minutes of meetings with the trades.

This was posted today on the London Taxi Drivers Forum, by the Vice chair of the UCG. 
"A request for an invitation was submitted to the Transport Commissioner last week by myself on behalf of the UCG, detailing the reasons why more transparency is needed in these meetings and that favouritism does little to instil confidence in the majority of taxi drivers who are not members of the orgs currently invited."


No reply as yet.......

Sunday, May 15, 2016

ABSOLUTE POWER, RACE TO THE BOTTOM....By Lenny Etheridge.

We are in the midst of a recession. "No shit, Sherlock."
This recession bitterly affects the working class.

For years now this recession has seen the rich get richer and the poor become enslaved.
Economists say, if you can see a city skyline full of cranes, there is no spare cash.


The wealthy have stuck everything into huge enterprises, and they need every bit of cash they can put their hands on; and that includes ours.

The new Mayor has an insurmountable task ahead of him. 
London is no longer a desirable destination.
It is choking under extreme pollution. And its arteries are clogged with unnecessary Private Hire minicabs and empty Buses.

The Buses are empty because, like all vehicles, they cannot move on the ever shrinking, overpopulated roads. 
Overpopulated because the previous Mayor refused to cap Transport for London's little earner (minicabs).

Who wants to sit on a bus, watching the world walk by?
And shrinking because the previous Mayor wanted to build a playground for bikes.

These spacious Cycle Super Highways are built, not for safety, but for speed. They are so big, Uber drivers often mistake them for roads. Who in their right mind would come to a city voted the most congested in the world?

Where you are forced to pay tax (Congestion Charge) for the privilege of sitting in an ever increasing meander of single lane traffic, which was caused by the very same shysters who levy the very same tax.

Once you finally get to your destination, you are then expected to pay four pounds an hour to park. 
No wonder people prefer to shop in Bluewater, Lakeside and anywhere else they can move freely without getting ripped off.

 
 
Yet the powers that be, think they can solve problems of overcrowding and pollution by pedestrianising areas like Oxford Street.

Really? 
And where do they think the inordinate amount of buses would go? 
The narrow backstreets of Britain's former shopping Mecca?
Is it now time for a London Mayor to stop listening to unelected quangos of self interested big businessmen and women, and listen to real Londoners?
Listening to Londoners who are at the sharp end of his decisions.

If you have not yet guessed, I am a Licensed London Taxi Driver. I openly admit my interests - unlike the conflicted board of TfL.
Like most Licensed London Taxi Drivers, I am not a Luddite. I have been accepting card payments for over a decade, on radio circuits and apps, long before Uber slithered into town.

The previous Mayor, Boris Johnson is a pathological liar. He lied to his wife, his employers, his constituents, the people of London, and his colleagues.

That man was born with a silver fork in his mouth.
He claimed he could not cap Private Hire minicab licenses, when it was well within his power to do so. 
His open contempt for Taxis is well documented.

I have to laugh when I look back to when 'Luddite' Taxi drivers were vilified by the media for behaving "outrageously" during one of Johnson's pantomimes at City Hall.

Has no one witnessed the pack behaviour of our honourable Members of Parliament during PMQ?
It did not help matters when one of our trade bodies apologised on our behalf. For what? For witnessing first hand Johnson's contempt for the questions put by Val Shawcross and Caroline Pidgeon?

Or when a member of the public (not a Licensed London Taxi Driver) pushed a security guard over?

No I do not apologise for anything that day. In fact I look back on our 'off the cuff' ten mile march in the rain, with pride.

 

Too long now the Taxi trade's representatives have been cozying up to the very people who are deregulating our trade.
History tells us that greed and corruption has always been part of any system.
Good men get assassinated whilst bad men fake their own deaths.

Who would have thought, pre Savile, that the BBC was a corrupt government tool?

From distorting information about the Miners Strike to suppressing rape and sexual assault in TfL licensed Private Hire minicabs.
Who would have guessed that two young, seemingly clean cut, up and coming political lightweights, like Dave and his afterbirth George, would go on to out-Thatcher Thatcher, and out-brazen Blair?

   
"Power corrupts; absolute power corrupts absolutely."
We have a situation where the Prime Minister orders the Mayor of London, according to Boris Johnson, to "Leave Uber alone." And where the Chancellor of the Exchequer lobbies the Mayor, on behalf of Uber.

We have 10 and 11 Downing Street favouring Uber, an American company, based in the Netherlands, who pay no Corporate Tax, whose 'drivers' get Income Support from the British taxpayer. All at the expense of London's iconic Licensed Taxi trade, who pay their taxes and do everything asked of them. They study the Knowledge of London for four years, pass an advanced driving test, pass a rigorous medical examination, are vetted by the police, drive an expensive purpose built vehicle, and have their fares set by TfL.

Four average Taxi drivers pay more tax than Uber UK.

TfL have been coerced by the Butch & Sundance of Downing Street, to allow illegal and immoral practices to take place, in favour of a freeloading American company.

TfL's Managing Director; Leon Daniels spends his spare time - when he is not busy lying on Uber's behalf to the GLA about 'on-off' insurances and bogus landlines - coaching Jo Bertram; General Manager of Uber UK, on how to get around various stipulations and requirements.

Courts are being told that an instrument which measures time and distance, is not a meter. Then what is it?

TfL state that an App which acts like a virtual binoculars, showing minicabs on a street nearby, with a customer choosing a minicab from that street, is not hailing.

TfL also state that when the customer presses the button of their App to instantly 'hire' a minicab, it is not 'instant', but 'pre booked'.
Let me ask you this - if a man decides at exactly 10am, to set his alarm clock to go off at exactly 10am; is that preset?

The answer is, no. And neither is an Uber journey pre booked. It is an immediate hail.
The minicab driver accepts the job, and is instantly hired.

TfL are churning out seven hundred Private Hire licenses every week, to satisfy Uber's appetite.
TfL are licensing Private Hire minicab drivers, without a full background check. Applicants relatively new to Britain, are having allowances made for them.

Other countries, including European countries, do not keep certain records on their systems forever.
Common sense tells us we must be able to check someone's background, within our own system, for a minimum of five years. Especially when the applicant is left alone with vulnerable customers, such as children and lone females.


TfL's requirements for a Private Hire license, is not good enough for the citizens of this country.
Contrary to popular belief in Downing Street, we are not plebs, we are people. Our daughters, mothers, sisters and wives, deserve better.

From their first application to their passing of the Knowledge, their advanced driving test, and receiving the coveted Green Badge, the applicant is looking at the best part of five years before they are deemed fit be a London Taxi driver.

When the London Taxi driver renews his Bill (license) every three years, the DBS process takes around four months.

Yet a Private Hire Roundel can be acquired within a day. By pumping out seven hundred Private Hire minicab licences a week, TfL cannot possibly be processing PH applications as stringently as Public Safety requires.

Our 'Owners' have always wanted more for themselves and less for us. Yet nowadays they cannot be asked to sugarcoat it.
What should do we do? Passively give in?

I firmly believe that in any fight, win or lose, hurt your opponent so badly, the bully will think twice before he comes back for more.
Uber bullies have all the money, the big name backers, professional lobbyists, and a huge amount of MPs in their pocket.

We have MPs calling, not for Uber to toe the public safety line, or to up its standards, but for Taxis to be deregulated and for our standards to drop, to meet the substandard Uber free-for-all.
Females are literally getting into a stranger's car, to satisfy investors' needs.

Big business and the media, especially the BBC, are turning a blind eye and deaf ear to the Private Hire minicab rape and sexual assault figures that have gone through the roof.

In essence, the money men do not care if our daughters are raped or abused, as long as their pockets are being stuffed with pieces of silver.
To 'bought and paid' officials, our raped and abused loved ones are but statistics, to be hidden away out of reach of the Freedom of Information Act.


Those who invest in and lobby for Uber, see victims' destroyed family members as acceptable collateral damage.
We the people do not count. We never have.
 
It is time for us to be heard.
We expect our new Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan to order an independent Public Enquiry into TfL's dealings with Uber, Boris Johnson and David Cameron.

We expect Peter Hendy, John Mason, Leon Daniels, Garrett Emmerson and the above main protagonists to be questioned on oath.
Something is rotten in the state of London, and we the people of London, demand answers.

Lenny Etheridge