RMT LTDB are holding a lobby of Parliament to push forward demands for a statutory definition of plying for hire.
The single biggest threat to the licensed London Taxi trade is homogenisation of both Taxi & PHV working practices.
The advent of technology has culminated in a situation where by PHV are plying for hire via a smartphone app. Most prominent of these apps. is Uber. A San Francisco based tech company founded by ultra free marketeer capitalist, Travis Kalanik.
However licensing authority Transport for London see no issue with the practice of Uber or any other application, that allows exhibition of vehicles to attract bookings. The regulator has also rushed to the defense of the $40 billion corporate monolith’s use of a taximeter.
The key difference between Taxis and Private hire is that Taxis can PLY FOR HIRE and Private Hire cannot. They must be Pre-Booked.
The requirement of a taximeter is to calculate the fare by time and distance when operating in the immediate hire market.
If Private hire are not permitted to operate this way then there is NO NEED FOR A METER.
RMT have identified that for effective, robust enforcement of both industries, a clear difference must be set.
Both Sir Peter Hendy and Boris Johnson along with Transport for London have stated that they can only regulate within the existing legislation.
The RMT therefor have been campaigning for a change in the legislation that offers clarity and that is to secure the Licensed London Taxi drivers privilege of plying for hire.
LOBBY! LOBBY! LOBBY!
Trade demonstrations have been announced throughout the duration of July.
Tuesday July 14th will see a united day of action by the trade. As RMT will be descending on Parliament for a rally inside the commons. This will be hosted by Harlington & Hayes Labour MP, John MacDonald and will include a panel of guest speakers. Drivers will have the opportunity to invite their MPs to the debate and present concerns over the threat to their livelihoods.
Full details will follow shortly with help on how to contact your MP and arrange a meeting. Meanwhile here are the key times and locations.
TUESDAY JULY 14th
HOUSE OF COMMONS (inside)
Rally beforehand under RMT banner at Windsor House demonstration at 1:40pm. Procession will be leaving at 2:30pm.
PLY FOR HIRE – DEFINE DON’T DEREGULATE