PHTM is angry and sad to report this story which has been ongoing since May 2020. Asif Shah, head of the West Yorkshire Coalition and proprietor of Baildon Private Hire, Shipley told PHTM: “One night in May 2020 at around 11.40pm a woman called using our freephone at Bradford Royal Infirmary to book a cab to Asda in Shipley - a six to eight-minute journey. We dis- patched the car 20 minutes later. Usually we pick up within a one to two minutes but that night we were busy. “When they got to Asda, around six minutes after picking her up, she said she needed to go to the cash machine, so our driver waited. Two minutes later a police officer approached the driver; the police were in fact already parked at Asda waiting for them. “The police told the driver that the cus- tomer had made an allegation that he

had touched her leg and threatened her with a knife. She also alleged that he had locked her in the cab by locking the doors internally. “However, the police officer found this to be impossible as even if the driver had locked the doors internally, passen- gers can still open the doors from inside. “Furthermore, the officers after check- ing our dispatch system - we use Autocab, which logs actual pick up times and tracks the journey taken with times and speeds, concluded that these allegations the woman was mak- ing could not possibly have happened within the six minutes of the actual journey time. “PC 6137 Lee logged the incident and assured us that this woman would be charged and prosecuted. “However, I have chased this incident up many times with the police but to date:

March 23 2021, nothing has been done.” PHTM comment: It’s a disgrace - why do the police treat out trade with such contempt? We all know what would have happened to this poor innocent driver, a lovely guy by all accounts, if there was no evidence to prove his inno- cence and the police actually believed these lies. He would have been charged, prosecuted and sent to prison - for sure! We ask that you call for Bradford police to take action now to show passengers who think that they can falsely accuse our drivers instead of paying their fare that they will be prosecuted. PHTM is warning all licensed drivers, please do not leave yourself open to this form off false allegation - install CCTV, and make sure you return home safe to you families at the end of your shift. PROTECT YOURSELF!


Taxi and private hire operators will have to hand over footage from their in-car CCTV systems if the authorities request it, under proposed new licence condi- tions. The Shropshire Star reports that in a report for the authority's licensing committee, public protection manager Anita Hunt says the revised Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Policy will ensure systems comply with council standards and will require video to “be made readily available to an authorised officer”. The new rules also nominate the coun- cil as “data controller” for footage gathered by the CCTV. Telford & Wrekin Council consulted on its revised policy between January 18 and February 15. “The main consideration, when review- ing the council’s policies and conditions of licence, remains ensuring public


safety,” Ms Hunt writes. “Licensing authorities have a legal duty to have regard to the statutory stan- dards relating to hackney carriage and private hire licensing.” Ms Hunt says those standards say CCTV can “deter, prevent and reduce the fear of crime, assist the police in investigating crime and assist motor insurance companies in investigating vehicle accidents”, yet “do not man- date the requirement of CCTV in vehicles”. However, she adds, Telford & Wrekin Council “encourages drivers and opera- tors to install it on a voluntary basis”. “If approved by committee, a condition will be imposed upon private hire vehi- cle and hackney carriage licences issued by the council to ensure that the CCTV complies with the council’s CCTV policy in licensed vehicles and access to it must be made readily available to

an authorised officer,” she writes. The updated policy will nominate the council as the “data controller”, making it “responsible for managing data in compliance with requirements set by the Information Commissioner’s Office”, she adds. Guidance at the ICO’s website defines “data controllers” as “the main decision makers [who] exercise overall control over the purposes and means of the processing of personal data”. Ms Hunt stated: “By being the data controller, the council provides partial oversight of data management and it reduces the burden on operators and drivers in relation to time and expendi- ture.”

Ms Hunt recommends the 11-member licensing committee approves the updated policy when it meets remotely on Tuesday, March 16. If it does so, it will come into force on Thursday, April 1.

APRIL 2021

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