Saturday, May 28, 2016
There is a UCG demo on 8th June, between 2pm and 4pm, Victoria Street and Windsor House.
It is a protest to highlight the corrupt state of Transport for London to a wider audience; with a call for Leon Daniels to go.
It is not aimed at the new Mayor. How could it be? His seat is not yet warm.
I am not a UCG member.
I understand the insignificance of replacing one corrupt official with another.
But the public, whose support we want, need to be informed of our struggle.
The whole of TfL needs to be reviewed.
London needs a Public Enquiry, looking into TfL's unhealthy relationship with rich disruptive organisations, from management level up to Johnson, Osborne and Cameron.
My union, the RMT do not support the demo. They also believe that Daniels will not be sacked, but promoted; re Hendy.
I personally do not care if Daniels is beatified.
This is not a tit for tat vendetta against Daniels. It is a public statement that we believe Leon Daniels is not fit to serve in his existing position.
The LTDA do everything to undermine the UCG and any other trade organisation.
They did the same last time out, with an 'all fur coat and no knickers' lobby come photo opportunity at Parliament, the day before a demo.
The LTDA boast about their relationship with MPs and officials. Look where that got us.
We are in this state because of the LTDA's cosy, ineffectual relationship with MPs and officials.
The LTDA are poodles.
Unite are more like a political party than a union. I am still waiting for that grand conjuring trick they and Tom Watson promised us, a year ago.
Luckily I did not hold my breath.
This lack of urgency, and my feeling that the Taxi Branch seemed to be of no real consequence to the largest union in the land, were my main reasons for leaving.
The LCDC are more a taxi newspaper than a taxi movement.
They released embarrassing emails between Daniels and Jo Bertrum, showing collusion between TfLTPH and Uber. But the readership of The Badge are only cab drivers.
It is the public who need to be informed.
A refusal to 'out' Daniels in public, by Orgs who refused to sit at the same table as him, smacks of grandstanding.
This demo will not inconvenience the public too much. It is occurring during a convenient time the Metropolitan Police agreed was not overly disruptive.
TfL hierarchy must be rolling in the aisles watching this division.
Whenever we need to show unity, an enemy within throws a spanner.
If we die, it will be due to Machiavellian ambition and driver apathy.
I for one will be on that demo calling for Daniels's head. And why not? He conspired to take ours.
So if you need an excuse not to attend, you can always use that old chestnut "My Org told me not to.", that is your perogative, your conscience.
If you work during the demo, any Taxi demo, then you are crossing a picket line. And you know what that makes you.
by Lenny Etheridge
Friday, May 27, 2016
So vehicle manufacturers are teaming up with PH and Taxi apps.
all talking about driverless cars so let's deal with that first then last.
Will there be a robot to load wheelchairs, luggage or deal with those who's language skills aren't great or not exactly sure of their destination?
We can imagine what will happen to those who have had one or twenty too many Cream Sodas and who might leave a parting gift for the next punter.
Back to the present, let's see all this for what it is, nothing more than a set of finance deals to tie in drivers to a app and a manufacturer over the longest possible time, they might as well install handcuffs to fit the steering wheel and a Benzedrine drip!
Some are already offering 'Payday' loan style arrangements so the suckers who work for those outfits are effectively driving today for yesterday's money, so we have now got financial manacles on the pedals as well.
This isn't the future it's slavery and that's nothing new.
Back to driverless cars, why bother at all?
Those beloved tax avoiding multinationals can get mugs to drive for less than the minimum wage subsidised by another set of mugs called the taxpayer who fund the tax credit and housing benefit system.
I could write to my MP but their very busy filling in expense claims for 40p, I could call Uber and complain but the landline isn't there. I could email Leon Daniels but he's busy corresponding with Jo.
AlI I do know is ' St Peter don't you call me cos' I can't go, I owe my soul to the company store'.
P.S 'The EU protects worker rights' .... really????
Uber Do Not Actually Accept Bookings, But The Drivers Do... An Open Letter To Chief Licensing Officer (Head of Licensing) Sheffield From Lee Ward.
Uber UK accepts PHV Bookings acting as disclosed agent for the Transportation Provider (as principal). Such acceptance by Uber UK as agent for the Transportation Provider gives rise to a contract for the provision to you of transportation services between you and the Transportation Provider (the "Transportation Contract"). For the avoidance of doubt: Uber UK does not itself provide transportation services, and is not a Transportation Provider. Uber UK acts as intermediary between you and the Transportation Provider. You acknowledge and agree that the provision to you of transportation services by the Transportation Provider is pursuant to the Transportation Contract and that Uber UK accepts your booking as agent for the Transportation Provider, but is not a party to that contract.
For the sake of clarity, your PHV Booking will be accepted and allocated to a Transportation Provider by Uber UK as holder of the relevant operator's licence. You should be aware that the Transportation Provider to which your PHV Booking is allocated and who provides the Transportation Services may be licensed in an area other than where the booking is requested or the Transportation Services are provided.
And as I am sure you are aware that the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 Section 56(1) states that;
For the purposes of this Part of this Act every contract for the hire of a private hire vehicle licensed under this Part of this Act shall be deemed to be made with the operator who accepted the booking for that vehicle whether or not he himself provided that vehicle.
After reading the summary of Judge Sean F Dunphy in the Ontario Court of State Justice in 2015 which can be located here https://www.canlii.org/en/on/onsc/doc/2015/2015onsc3572/2015onsc3572.pdf
It was very clear that a P2P service such as Uber do not actually accept the booking, but the driver does. This has been proven quite easily by myself and a friend who is an Uber driver. We drove to the outskirts of Sheffield to ensure that no other Uber driver was close by and I requested a trip from the Uber App, which I could not make because no Uber cars were available and therefore Uber could not and did not accept my booking.
I then asked my friend to log into his Uber drivers App and make himself available for work, which he did. Sure enough I could now link myself to a driver on the Uber circuit, so I therefore requested a journey, but, I asked my friend to not accept the booking. Because he did not accept the booking the Uber App then told me to try again later, which is quite obvious that the booking was never accepted in the first place by Uber even though a driver and vehicle was in the area.
Again, this simply proves that what Judge Dunphy identified that it is the driver who accepts the booking and not Uber or any of its servers, companies registered under its umbrella or an employee of Uber that accepts the booking as an operator of private hire vehicles is by law required to do. The driver quite clearly accepts the booking and Uber then link the P2P request of the customer with the driver. Even if the driver accepts the booking and then chooses to decline the booking, the customer is then still without a booking being accepted because they have to try and get another driver to accept the booking by repeating the process.
This then means that every driver who accepts a booking by a user of the Uber App is actually plying for hire and as such is doing nothing legally different than the drivers who had their licenses suspended/revoked back in late 2015.
This then therefore leads me to request that Sheffield City Council revoke the Private Hire Operators license issued to Uber on the grounds that every journey that the public think is fully legal and therefore insured is in fact no different than plying for hire which will as you are aware, cancel the Private Hire insurance of the driver who collects them and takes them to the destination unknowingly breaking the law.
Another scenario that would support this action is that if a friend of mine has an operators license and puts his phone on divert to my mobile so that I can take calls and then cover the work I would also, as a driver, be accepting the work and not him himself who is a licensed operator.
I must advise you and the Sheffield City Council that ALPHA see this matter of such a high importance to the safety of the public travelling in Sheffield that if no action is taken by yourselves by the close of business on Friday the 28th of May 2016 then we will have no option other than to take this information both locally and nationally to the the media and other bodies that will find this information relevant.
Please respond to this email as soon as possible and not like previous emails that I have sent to yourself.
Unless The Taxi Trade Ditches The Engagement Policy And Unites Fully, It Hasn't Got A Hope Of Surviving...by Jim Thomas
Thursday, May 26, 2016
Source: Car Keys
So there you have it, what's next???
A driverless, satellite navigated Cab, which could be hitting our streets by 2025.
Still fancy paying £60k for a zero emmision electric, range extended TX5 or Metro?
With a life span of possibly less than 7 years...
Wednesday, May 25, 2016
Uber accuse Taxis Of Overcharging Wheelchair Customers And Announce Their LandLine Exemption From TfL.
Tuesday, May 24, 2016
Monday, May 23, 2016
Sunday, May 22, 2016
They claimed his Cab Driver License was over a year out of date.
Although my mate had received his DBS in March 2015, his Cab License refused to turn up, even though his wife sent four written requests.
To be fair to all parties concerned, he had moved address.
It seemed obvious that my friend had filled in all the correct forms and sent them to the correct address, with all the correct details, because he had been issued with a DBS.
But according to Transport for London, "You will have to go through the whole process again. Including a new medical and new DBS.
Believe me I am not one hundred, but two hundred percent sure you are looking at, at least eighteen weeks before you can work again."
Who can afford four or five months out of work?
TfL were unwilling to accept any responsibility for this cock-up.
And Danny was told he had to stop work immediately.
I rallied the troops and was preparing for a mass demo outside Palestra House everyday until Danny's license was reissued.
After all, the license is just a fee. Danny was still a legitimate Taxi Driver; considering he has passed the Knowledge, passed his advanced driving test, passed his medical, and still had two years left on his current DBS. We felt he was being treated harshly.
Surely, we thought, TfL could give him a temporary license/cover note?
But it seems red tape in Palestra House is made of the unbreakable and unimaginative kind, when it is applied to Taxis.
Luckily Danny is a member of a union. He contacted the RMT, and they started negotiating on his behalf immediately.
More and more it looked like TfL were not going to budge.
More and more it looked like a long drawn out war of daily demonstrations on the horizon.
Why do TfL assume that every Taxi driver is up to no good?
No one, it seems, is given the benefit of the doubt from Palestra House - even those like Danny, with an unblemished record.
To cut a long story short, the RMT negotiated a temporary license for Danny, with the proviso that he also renews his DBS. Don't ask me why.
At least they accepted his medical certificate was still valid.
Post negotiations, this story takes a different turn; highlighting the human side of TfL.
Danny is dyslexic. So when he arrived at the TfLTPH licensing office the next day, he was met by a friendly and extremely patient TfL officer, named Minette. She helped Danny through the whole process. Other members of staff, like Jessie, went out of their way to make Danny feel relaxed, and defused a potentially stressful situation.
Danny told me of the chaos he witnessed, where drivers in similar situations to his, obviously burdened by financial hardship, were pleading with staff for their licenses, so they could just simply go to work.
I will not betray details, but suffice to say Danny wished he had some spare cash to give one particular driver, whose story was heartbreaking.
This is the day to day routine for counter staff at TfLTPH; dealing with drivers under extreme stress, caused by inept clerks and inconsiderate bosses, who delegate the sharp end of the stick down to them.
Danny could not speak highly enough of Lewis Norton, Branch Secretary of the RMT, for turning eighteen weeks into two days.
I refuse to compromise this story by promoting one Union or Org above another. Needless to say, if you do not belong to any Union or Org, get your head out of the sand and your finger out of your arse, and join one now, before you are forced to take a long and unexpected holiday.
You do not want to find yourself up against a stubborn and unaccountable TfL, without some form of backing.
"Where we are provided with a complete application, including the results of the DBS check and any other necessary information, but have not yet made a licensing decision before the old one expires, the existing licence will remain in force until a decision is made in accordance with section 17(7). In these circumstances, a driver will not be issued with, nor require, a temporary licence pending a decision being made on their application.
Please note that contrary to the comment in your email, section 17 of the Transport Act 1985 only applies to London taxi driver and vehicle licences, not London private hire vehicle driver licences.
Leon Daniels | Managing Director
Transport for London | Surface Transport | Palestra |
11th Floor - Zone R4| 197 Blackfriars Road|Southwark|SE1 8NJ".
If you are sending your application off using the postal system, send it recorded delivery.
Any driver who had lost work after being told they can't, after receiving a clear DBS and having presented a completed application form, should seek compensation from TfL for loss of earnings. In these extreme cases it's not the drivers fault, so TfL should reimburse the driver for work he/she could have undertaken while unlawfully denied the right to work.