Monday, September 24, 2018
The judge has also ordered TfL pay Westminster Council’s legal fees. They must agree a figure or pay £50,000 within 14 days of the order, which was made today.
Campaigner Jessica Learmond-Criqui, who was a named party in the judicial review proceedings, told the Ham&High: "Have TfL learned nothing – rather than reading and absorbing the comprehensive defeat from last week, reviewing their processes and learning from the judge’s criticisms, TfL just went for an appeal. How clear does the judge have to be about his decision?"
A TfL spokesperson called the judge’s decision "procedural". They said: "We can still apply to appeal at the Court of Appeal, and we remain in discussions with Westminster regarding payment of legal fees."
Source : http://www.hamhigh.co.uk
Saturday, September 22, 2018
Monday, September 17, 2018
London radio station LBC, has revealed that the East-West cycle superhighway has cost over £62,000 for every extra cyclist attracted to the route.
The blue cycle path, which currently runs from Lancaster Gate to Tower Hill, was Boris Johnson's flagship cycling project as Mayor. Heralded as the "Crossrail of cycling", the £47 million project was "designed to encourage the large numbers of people who would like to cycle, but currently feel unable to."
The news will infuriate taxi drivers and hauliers who have seen their journey times significantly increased, who lost a lane on the Embankment to make way for the Cycle Superhighway, doubling journey times.
See LBC article and video here:
Sunday, September 16, 2018
Glitch Prevents Uber Drivers Getting Paid...Is There A Problem As Cash Flow Appears To Dry Up ???
SAN FRANCISCO — Uber on Saturday said it was still working to fix an issue that was preventing its drivers from collecting their earnings.
“We have identified an issue affecting drivers’ visibility into their trip earnings and our Instant Pay feature. Drivers will be paid for all trips and we sincerely regret any inconvenience,” a spokesperson for the San Francisco-based rideshare company sannounced on Friday.
“We are working to quickly resolve the issue,” the spokesperson added. “As always, drivers in California will see their weekly earnings deposited directly into their account for every trip they have taken after being processed on Tuesdays at noon.”
It wasn’t immediately clear what caused the issue or when it began, as the spokesperson declined to comment further, but some drivers reported that they hadn’t been able to cash out for more than 24 hours. Regular checks just keep bringing up the same message...."Processing UberX"
Drivers took to Twitter to express their frustration.
“@Uber when are you guys paying the drivers?” @silvanaeagle said in a tweet to @Uber_Support on Friday afternoon. “SF Bay Area drivers don’t really like to work for free!”
In a reply to a different driver, @Uber_Support said in most cases Instant Pay would return to normal in a few hours.
Source : MercuryNews
TAXI LEAKS EXTRA BIT : Meanwhile, in London !
Friday, September 14, 2018
Joint Founder Of The Fellowship of Hackney Carriage Drivers, To Send Back His Freedom Of The City Certificate.
Thursday, September 13, 2018
The Danish supreme court on Thursday ratified fines given to four Uber drivers for operating illegally, paving the way for similar fines on a further 1,500 drivers.
The four taxi drivers, one of whom was fined 486,500 Danish crowns ($78,060), were charged with failing to have permits and for violating a law introduced to combat Uber which imposed extra rules on taxis operating in Denmark.
After launching its service in Denmark in 2014, Uber Technologies Inc was criticized by taxi driver unions, companies and politicians who said the company posed unfair competition by not meeting legal standards required for established taxi firms.
"We are very disappointed for the drivers involved and our top priority is to support them during this difficult time," an Uber spokeswoman said.
"We are changing the way we do business and are operating in line with local laws across Europe, connecting with professionally licensed drivers," she said.
The landmark case means the police can issue a fine for each individual ride made by Uber's more than 1,500 drivers in the country between 2014 and 2017.
A spokesman for the Copenhagen police said it would assess the verdict and decide next week how to proceed.
Parliament passed a law in February 2017 that introduced more stringent requirements on taxis, such as mandatory fare meters and seat sensors. The new rules prompted Uber's withdrawal.
The company has previously said it would pay any fine given to its drivers, according to Danish newspaper Berlingske
Source : Rueters
TAXI LEAKS EXTRA BIT:
Meanwhile here in London, our largest org’s General Secretary Steve McNamara says they, the LTDA will not be contesting the Uber verdict from conflict of interest Judge Emma Arbuthnot.
Even though Uber admitted in court they were operating illegally, there are no plans to take the responsible TfL directors to court for knowingly allowing Yber to operate illegally for 6 years .... (the proof is available)
Drivers are now wondering if Steve McNamara is actually representing the best interests of his membership, or the best interests of TfL?
Points must have reason, and the runs connected between two points clearly demonstrate a knowledge students ability to travel in a direct and positive way, so the examiners deliberately 'pinging' points of stupidity to a nervous student serves no point at all and wastes an examination of 'Knowledge' which is precisely the point everyone is attending on the day.
I remember getting the 'odd' red herring point to put me in my place and served as a reminder to current day a passengers awkwardness and understand why a random shop in a random high street occasionally arises, but looking at some of the points being asked and even getting both the points the examiner excludes one or two important roads necessary to complete the run,....and again I understand the necessity to do this due to the roadwork madness we all have to circumnavigate, but looking at the points and excluded routes particularly given that specific candidates have been doing the knowledge for some time demonstrates to me a deliberate attempt to hinder progression particularly 'older' students who are subjected to a change in career but find the going 'complicatedly' difficult for no real reason.
The knowledge is not easy, it never was, but The Mr Millers, Mr Shoens, Mr Mayhews and others to many to name, would never have conducted the trivial point exercises currently being used which are preventing knowledge progression and dampening the enthusiasm of candidates who clearly share their blights with outsiders who might have been considering starting the world famous knowledge but are being put off by a created absurdity!
Maybe that is the official point to kill the interest off?
Tuesday, September 11, 2018
Sunday, September 09, 2018
Why We Should All Support Chris Johnson’s Tribunal Case Against Taxi Hailing App- MyTaxi... by Sean Paul Day
There are those, especially newer drivers who didn’t experience a time before apps existed, who don’t feel they (as service providers) are being taken advantage of or that the apps are acting in any way that is remotely predatorial? If you are one such person, then it’s only natural you’d like it to stay that way?
Taxi driver Chris Johnson’s tribunal claim against MyTaxi is not about taking away how we currently use the app, or doing away with the apps altogether, far from it, Chris Johnson’s case is about the accountability of the app companies themselves.
Chris personally feels he was unfairly deactivated, or at the very least, not offered an explanation as to why he was deactivated. The closest he got was to be told that MyTaxi ‘didn’t need a reason’ to deactivate drivers. It was only after several unsuccessful attempts at getting a satisfactory answer that he decided to take matters further.
To be clear, this is not a debate over whether he was or wasn’t unfairly dismissed, its about his right to contest the dismissal, the same as he would in any other work place. For MyTaxi to win, they will have to argue drivers act independently on the app, and MyTaxi is merely an agent and the app a proviso for the driver to accept jobs- to ply for hire if you will. This alone would strengthen our trade immeasurably.
In theory, it also heaps pressure on Uber to apply conditions so their drivers unequivocally do not ply4hire- the province of licensed taxis only- which solidifies The Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) ruling that Uber drivers should be classified as workers, entitled to basic employment rights. And if that is so, the pending court battle over claims uber has failed to pay (what could amount to) hundreds of millions of pounds in VAT is also strengthened. So all those who want PH to pay the congestion charge? Well if Uber has to pay VAT then costs to use an Über will also rise, no,
Conversely, if Über is entitled to pay Taxi drivers compensation for loss of earning and the intention to cause harm,, then why isn’t MyTaxi also entitled to pay compensation if (1) a driver’s income is detrimentally effected by a dismissal and (2) the driver has been unfairly dismissed?
At the very least, the case should stop the app companies from thinking they can do want they want, when they want, and get away with it. And if MyTaxi flatly refuse to declare their hand as a plying app, then maybe they too should be subjected to the same responsibilities as others who’re engaged in an employment relationship.
There is simply no argument for not supporting this case. If tomorrow MyTaxi says you have to stand in the middle of Piccadilly Circus with your thumb in your ass and pirouette 3 times, and if you refuse you’re deactivated? What recourse would there be? Couple that with fewer and fewer jobs on the street, and…? Think seriously about protecting what you’re enjoying now.
It’s time to disambiguate. Incertitude only serves those who hold the controlling capacity, and the trade has been left in limbo for long enough. No doubt, a regulatory framework will be formatted at some point down the line, and personally, I’d rather that formatting be influenced by drivers than be left to those whose end game involves the demise of the taxi trade
We have a two year window to make the trade attractive enough to encourage potential drivers into undertaking the KOL. As it stands, I don’t think the apps provide enough distinction to entice drivers to commit four years of their life to studying when they could be driving for Über within 28 days. If the KOL draws to a natural end, then what are we left with? A vehicle that’s not allowed into certain roads? If this doesn’t get the trade thinking they need to do whatever it takes to defend what we have left to defend, then nothing will.
Chris Johnson is looking to raise £18,000 to fund a legal challenge against MyTaxi.
Saturday, September 08, 2018
Taxi driver Tony Casey, fears somebody "could be killed" as drivers are being targeted by a gang from Lisson Grove.
Tony, who has been driving a black cab in London since the 1980s, says the attacks are becoming commonplace. The road is one of the main routes into Marylebone and Paddington from St John’s Wood, along with the Edgware Road.
Gangs are targeting taxi drivers and their takings. This includes brazen attempts to stop the cars in the street, and even trying to get drivers to help disabled people get into the Taxi, only to rob them when they step out of the cab. Tweets also say a driver was attacked with a fire extinguisher.
Tony said: "For the last few years, licensed cab drivers have been robbed while driving through Lisson Grove. It’s a joke.
"The police don’t seem to be interested or care about taxi drivers. Somebody, either a taxi driver or one of the gang members, could be killed."
Alex Workman has been driving taxis for 11 years, and lives in Lisson Grove. He has seen the aftermath of a robbery.
"I picked up a group in Praed Street," he said. "When they all piled in, they said: ‘Can you pick up my friend’s bag on the way?’"
When Alex’s cab pulled up, the youths picked up a bag from the street. He quickly realised they had a driver’s money bag.
"I told them to get out, and they dropped the bag on the way. When I checked, it was empty. A woman came up and said she’d seen a taxi driver being robbed."
The 37-year-old says some taxi drivers are no longer carrying cash bags to minimise the risk of being robbed. He told us he fears for his safety.
"Myself, and drivers know who these people are. It would be an easy problem to tackle, but they would have to get a police presence in the area. I don’t have much confidence in the police full stop. I don’t blame individual officers or Sadiq Khan, but I put blame directly at the door of commissioner Cressida Dick.
"Like a lot of visible crime at the moment, you need visible officers. It’s not about taking DNA or doing stuff behind computer screens, it’s about getting boots on the ground."
Scotland Yard pointed us to Church Streets neighbourhood police team, who could not be reached for comment.
Source : Article From The Ham and High.
TAXI LEAKS EXTRA BIT: by Jim Thomas.
The age of the attackers range from young teens to late twenties.
I have myself been targeted by these gangs. A few weeks ago, I picked up a young man in Finchley Road and was directed to Church Street Edgware Road. The passenger directed me to stop by a group of men standing in a door way.
As we pulled up (I had my foot on the brake locking the door) he put his arm out the window and let himself out of my Cab. He then goaded me to get out and confront him, but I just drove off with the door open, untill I got a safe distance away and was able to close.
I managed to get this image of him with my in cab CCTV.
I was also the victim of a failed attack in Eversholt Street, when a young man ran up to the side of the Taxi while I waited at a red light and tried to pull open the near side luggage door. He made no attempt to enter the vehicle via the rear doors (which were at the start of his approach unlocked) and was shouting "please open the door, do me a favour, put down the window I just want to tell you something.
I had to jump the lights to get away as I feared he was about to smash the window....this I have on video from mydash-cam.
Other drivers have been attacked by two men with powder fire extinguishers. The driver is doused in powder through the open window, the attackers open the driver's door through the window and pull out the driver. His phone moneybag, etc are then taken and the attackers run off in the direction of Church Street.
Other drivers have been flagged down by Frampton Street, told my nan is coming out in a wheelchair can you get the ramp out. As the driver gets out to position the ramp, he is then attacked and robbed.
These gangs have been allowed to carry on robbing Cabbies for far too long. As far as we know they have been doing this for over two years now. Drivers have been robbed and assaulted.
Drivers involved in these attacks have been told by operators on the emergency number 999 that no officers are available and have been told to report the robbery to a police station and as we all know, at night, finding one open is not a simple excersise.
A few weeks ago, two Cabbies sitting in the rank at Marylebone Station, were threatened with a bottle alleged to contain acid....the police were called and the drivers were told that there were no units available in the area!
These attacks show why it is so important to lock the front doors at all time, not just at night. Many of these attacks have happened in broad daylight. "Keep em out".
TAXI LEAKS EXTRA COMMENT: by John Reid
Just remember this, an American was locking up his house at night when he saw 2 men in his garden shed. He called the police and they said cannot help as no one in the area.
So he rang back five minutes later and said he had just shot and killed the 2 men. In no time at all, their were10 to12 police cars and a helicopter and other emergencies vehicles outside his house.
When the duty office saw the 2 men were not dead he said he was going to arrest the man. When he asked why he was being arrested the duty officer said for lying to me!
The man then said, but you lied to me when you said you had no one to send.....
So, just think about it when you cannot get help.
Friday, September 07, 2018
Taxileaks understand that London Cabbie Chris Johnson is bringing an employment tribunal claim against app operator MyTaxi.
Johnson claims that he was unfairly dismissed after a series of whistleblowing claims and questions surrounding his employment status on the app.
We understand that for Johnson to lose an employment tribunal MyTaxi will need to argue he was operating independently on the app, akin to plying for hire, If he wins, drivers using the app will be entitled to basic protections such as National Minimum Wage, paid annual leave and protection under anti-discrimination legislation. Given the increasing market dominance of these apps these are important rights and winning may well stop apps like MyTaxi illegitimately undercutting individuals who are genuinely operating on their own account.
An employment tribunal rightly brings the arguments in to the public domain and it's an argument that the trade must have "this is about 'our' future claims Johnson.
Do we (orgs/unions/drivers) want to try to close down the ability of taxi app companies putting private hire drivers on the app like Hailo & Gett did? Or do we want to walk blindly into oblivion.. and an eventual one tier system?
We all accept that apps have revolutionised the industry and drivers and passengers have embraced this, but if we are going to protect ourselves isn't it best that we fight for basic employment rights if app companies want to suspended or terminate us without reason....?
Johnson is looking to raise £18,000 to fund a legal challenge against MyTaxi.
Thursday, September 06, 2018
Uber Has Till 1st October To Install 24/7 Manned Help Line For Passengers: (Voice Contact Requirement).
In June 2016, Transport for London (TfL) made a number of regulatory changes to raise standards in London’s private hire industry and improve safety and convenience for customers.
This included the introduction of a requirement for London private hire vehicle (PHV) operators to make someone available for passengers to speak to during their hours of business and at all times during a journey if passengers want to make a complaint or discuss other matters relating to their booking (the Voice Contact Requirement).
Following a legal challenge, the Court of Appeal, in a judgment given today, have reversed the High Court’s decision and found the Voice Contact Requirement to be lawful thereby upholding TfL’s original decision to introduce it.
As a result of the judgment, the Voice Contact Requirement remains in place. However, in order to allow operators time to implement any necessary changes following the judgment, they should make sure they comply fully by no later than 1 October 2018. TfL encourages operators to comply fully with the Voice Contact Requirement sooner if possible. Guidance and information on how to comply will be published on our website in due course.
If you need further information, please email us at email@example.com or call our Licensing Team on tel. 0343 222 4444 (Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm).
Interim General Manager London Taxi and Private Hire Transport for London
TAXI LEAKS EXTRA BIT.......?
In the words of Johnny Nash....there are more questions than answers!
This noticed was signed off by Helln Chapman's replacement on the 25 May 2018.
So why have they only just put this on their website....why the secrecy again?