It has to be said beyond any shadow of a doubt that this last year has been an absolute challenge for everyone. There have however been some positive spins to this whole situa- tion. For example, we have all found it much easier to stay in touch, to reach out, to have meetings with various govern- ment agencies which may not otherwise have been possible, or at the very least would have been far more difficult.

Who have we been meeting with? • Department for Transport on various topics concerning our industry.

• Joint Air Quality Unit (JAQU) on clean air zones. • Department for Health and Social Care for rapid testing rollout.

• British Rail for ongoing transport solutions. • NHS for test track and trace. • Transport Research Laboratory on Covid screens. • Various local authorities nationwide on consultations. • Institute of Licensing. • Transport for Greater Manchester on the minimum licensing standards and clean air zone.

• Local and National MPs and Ministers to discuss local issues within their regions. • British Horticultural Society for delivery services. • Department for Education on the provision of payment for school runs.

• We worked with several Covid protection screen suppliers to try to find the most suitable, offering technical support in the design and installation.

• Energy Saving Trust on the rollout and payment of the Scottish government Covid protection devices funding.

• We even sourced and obtained face coverings, contact- less thermometers, air purifying systems, and anything else we could get our hands on to protect the industry and help prevent the spread of the virus.

Add to this list of course the communication with other large stakeholders nationally to ensure we are all working to the same goals and getting remarkably similar messages across.

As a result, we have actually achieved quite a lot over the year. We launched the funding Name and Shame Campaign in partnership with PHTM, which was by no means an easy task, exploring each local authority to find accurate details as to what level of support was being offered to our members and readers, creating up to date charts which were easy to read and understand, and of course reporting back to the governing bodies accordingly. That campaign is ongoing, as you will see in this edition of PHTM.

• We managed to get the government guidance on Covid screens completely rewritten as of early March.

• The messaging about the wearing of masks was amended to include taxi and private hire journeys.

• Several local authorities suddenly started to announce, or 56

at least better publicise the funding available either through driver grants, or Additional Restrictions Grants.

• Several local authorities have also launched consultations on local conditions, especially as a result of the reform to licensing, which was announced in July 2020. As a result, we have been asked to be involved in various consulta- tions, either to advise and support in the background, or to review and supply responses in the background, or to directly respond, even in some regions to take part in their virtual meetings in support of the local associations.

TellMAMMA launched a taxi and private hire driver focused campaign: An excellent charity which has a drive and motivation to alert, highlight and hopefully reduce attacks on drivers and racial abuse. NPHTA was delighted to be invited to be a part of the launch, and we offer our full support to this scheme, which for now is based around the Derby area, but is hoping to expand nationwide. So please get behind this and support it, as this is all about your safety and protection.

As if that was not enough! Drivers and vehicles of course are still subject to licensing conditions, potential suspensions, and revocations, so we have also been supporting and advising on such matters nationally, providing legislation and case law where appeals are necessary, or advising on presentations to licensing committee hearings.

Additionally, we are watching court rulings and local issues, sharing information to keep you all informed, and of course posting and sharing the latest government announcements as and where necessary.

We were approached by the Information Commissioners Office to publish a bulletin for them around CCTV record- ings. Initially it had errors, but we were delighted that they were happy to work with us to amend the document prior to publishing it; the resulting document was a much clearer message. This bulletin was published in the March edition, we expand on this within the CCTV v Dashcams article.

Our work as your National Private Hire and Taxi Association has never stopped, faltered, or wavered for over 30 years; we have always been in your corner and we always will be.

As with any association, union, or any type of trade organi- sation, we are only as strong as our membership, so once again, if you are not already a member, then we need YOU to join and help us to make a difference, keeping our voice a powerful one when we are representing you, at all levels.

DON’T DELAY, JOIN TODAY! 0161 280 2800 APRIL 2021

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