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SOME FINANCIAL HELP ...


LIVERPOOL TAXI AND PHV DRIVERS TO BE GIVEN ONE-OFF GRANT BY COUNCIL


Liverpool’s licensed black cab and PHV drivers are set to receive a cash boost after taking severe hits to their income due to the pandemic. According to the Liverpool Echo, the coun- cil’s cabinet approved the funding of up to £210 for almost 4,000 drivers. It effectively constitutes a refund of the £170 vehicle licence fee they pay each year if they own a black cab plus their £40 badge fee. The total cost, £663,400, will be covered by the £10m set aside by the council earlier this month to help alleviate the impact of Covid- 19 trading restrictions in the visitor economy. Speaking at cabinet on Friday 23 October, mayor Joe Anderson said the grant was a “gesture” and said he was fully aware it would not solve drivers’ problems - but said he hoped it would assist them. He said: “I know how incredibly difficult this year has been for taxi drivers, with the lock- down from March and the new restrictions that have recently been placed on Liverpool City Region. It is particularly tough for them at the moment because – as I have been


saying repeatedly over the last few weeks – the support package made available by the government is simply not good enough. “The taxi trade is a valued part of the city’s economy, particularly as they are among the first people that visitors to our city come into contact with. So this is our way of doing what we can to assist them during these unprecedented times.” Unite’s Tommy McIntyre said he was grate- ful for the council’s move to create the grant. He said: “We are concerned that if there is no support to help the trade, we may not have a trade when we come out of this latest lockdown period. “It is not just the financial wellbeing of our drivers that is at stake, but their mental health and the impact on their families.” There are 3,886 licensed drivers in Liver- pool’s black cab and private hire trade. Black cab drivers comprise 1,882 of those drivers, while there are 2,004 private hire drivers. PHTM applauds Liverpool Council’s actions and urges other councils to follow suit.


SCOTTISHRETROFIT FUND OPEN


From 15 October, the Covid-19 Public Trans- port Retrofit Fund was open to applications from bus and taxi/private hire operators in Scotland, with other public transportation vehicles to follow soon. Funded by Transport Scotland and adminis- tered by Energy Saving Trust, the fund will support the installation of measures needed to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission in vehicles, such as the installation of driver screens, hand sanitiser dispensers, high- performance air conditioning units and disinfectant fogging equipment. See more information, including eligibility criteria and how to apply, on our website: ensvgtr.uk/ghpB6


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