Sunday, 23 January 2011

Excellent Branch Meeting...

What an excellent start to the new year for the RMT London Taxi branch with a packed January meeting and a welcome visit from Steve Hedley regional organiser for the London Transport region (TFL).

Much was discussed at the two hour meeting and the branch is moving forward with the formation of sub-committees which involve members (Taxi-cab drivers) getting involved and dealing with the real issues that affect us all on a daily/nightly basis.

The issue of age limits was debated and we have decided to seek legal advice re this very thorny issue that will see many (thousands) Taxi-cabs come off the road in the year 2012. It is sad to say for all the talk of the change in management of the PCO we are still managed by people (TFL) who fail to consult properly with the very people who pay them the licence fees.

Transparency is also a major issue and in the year 2011 the Taxi trade appears to meet in private with no public record of meetings/minutes taking place. It is important that proper minutes/records are kept of meetings so that all parties whoever they may be understand the wider responsibility they have towards all of the Taxi-cab driving community. The RMT London Taxi branch is a well run branch of a very well organised and effective trade union, we comply with all relevant trade union legislation.

Over the coming weeks and months you'll be hearing a lot more of us for we are a campaigning union that doesn't give up but understands to win you need to be in this for the long haul. The issues that we face as a Taxi trade will not be dealt with overnight and one or two drive-in's solve nothing. You have to lobby politicians of the GLA/Parliament, seek consensus where you can, build relationships with the media but most importantly do the ground work, the real hard work and then present your case in a clear concise manner for all to see/hear and judge.

RMT London Taxi branch "never on our knees".

Saturday, 8 January 2011


Happy New Year to one and all but especially members of the RMT London Taxi branch.

Please note that the first meeting of the RMT London Taxi branch will be at the Chadwick Street Sports Centre just behind the Channel 4 building off Horseferry Road SW1 at 6.45pm on Weds the 12th of January 2011.

We have much to discuss/debate and organise for the coming year. The London Taxi trade isn't stuck at a crossroads, it appears to be sitting on a level crossing whilst the alarms ring out all around us. Just before Christmas the Taxi trade was yet again punished for driving Taxi-cabs that TFL licence and insist we drive, yet it is the ordinary Taxi-cab driver/owner who has an age limit placed upon a vehicle with little compensation on offer to offset the reduction in the residual values of all our Taxi-cabs.

Please Note the RMT London Taxi branch said NO to age limits and we sought a more generous compensation package that would have given the London Taxi trade a real incentive to upgrade to a euro 4 and when available a euro 5 standard Taxi-cab. Instead the London Taxi trade has been lumbered with an age limit of 15 years from the 1st of January 2012, and moved a step closer to parity with the mini-cab/phv trade by accepting "mini-cab" standard vehicle testing procedures from 2013.

The twice yearly annual MoT along with two further visits to SGS is identical to the mini-cab/phv testing procedure. Many in the London Taxi trade sang for joy when Boris Johnson was elected Mayor and he scrapped the twice yearly annual inspection regime yet it appears some have forgotten what they lobbied for just 3 years ago.

Our trade is in trouble and you the self employed Taxi-cab driver needs to understand that in the year 2011 we still don't have a say in how our businesses are run. It's time to join the RMT and shake the very foundations that TFL is built upon and wake those in authority up once again.

Join the RMT at