Sunday, 27 February 2011

Safer Travel at Night (STAN)/Demonstrations.

If Transport for London which is chaired by the Mayor and the Metropolitan Police Service are serious about "tackling" touting by unlicensed and licensed mini-cab drivers can they please explain to the RMT London Taxi branch why they have done absolutely nothing with regards to the blatant parking and illegal ranking on the Charing Cross Road? Please note our members along with many others have complained to Westminster City Council and TFL/Taxi private hire.

A Taxi rank (night-time) is occupied by cars/touts every night of the week and the authorities choose not to even ticket those who sit upon a working Taxi-cab rank. Note the Met Police have the power to ticket and if necessary surely to remove vehicles placed upon a working Taxi rank.

In 2009 there were 143 reported sexual offences.We now know that of that 143 reported crimes 24 of them were actual rapes. Yes 24 women raped in London and 119 were sexually assaulted whilst the culprits or suspects "rank illegally" in the heart of the west end or outside night clubs/bars and those in authority eg the Met Police, the Mayor and Transport for London do very little other than the annual Christmas campaign that very few people take notice of when they are under the influence of alcohol.

What is even more worrying is the way the Metropolitan Police record crimes so the RMT London Taxi branch will be bringing to the attention a number of issues to the present commissioner of the Met Police and the Metropolitan Police Authority (MPA).


All Taxi-cab drivers should note that the RMT London Taxi branch is a democratic well organised growing union of like minded Taxi-cab drivers who are prepared and willing to engage with people in authority so that we can improve the working conditions of you the Taxi-cab driver and provide an even better Taxi-cab service to members of the public.

We have over recent months engaged with the present director of Taxi private hire and have been involved and included in all Taxi trade consultations contrary to what some people might like you the Taxi-cab driver to believe. The committee of the branch works tirelessly on your behalf however there comes a point where those in authority fail to deal with and tackle problems that Taxi-cab drivers exprience on a near nightly or daily basis.

Branch members have mandated the committee of the RMT to start a programme of demonstrations at various locations/spots within London. I am pleased to inform members that plans are afoot and we shall be informing you and the media of a number of dates/times/places where we will begin more public/vocal and maybe even noisy events to highlight to the wider world the incompetency of many who hold office and fail to carry out their job/duties in a professional/competent manner.

Join the RMT London Taxi branch online at or pop into George Vyse (committee member) at Great Suffolk Street Taxi Centre or RMT Unity House in Chalton Street NW1 and sign up on the spot.

RMT "never on our knees".

Saturday, 12 February 2011

Safer Travel at Night...

Within many parts of the taxi trade but especially the online quarter much debate is had about the failure of the "safer travel at night" initiative that attempts to educate the public and ensure people like you and me get home safely at night.

If this initiative had actually respected the London taxi-cab driver and actually "obeyed" the law with regards to "ranking" and "plying for hire" Transport for London" and the "Metropolitan Police" might not find themselves staring at a set of statistics that paint a very grime picture of sexual related assaults relating to touts/mini-cabs/phv's and on the very rare occasion a London taxi-cab.

The statistics released by Transport for London back in September 2010 make grim reading for they clearly show a rise in sexual assaults/rapes, here follow the numbers for 2008/2009;
  • 2008 = 93
  • 2009 = 143
A rise of over 50% at a time of increased activity by the Metropolitan Police and Transport for London. The figures also hide another nasty tale and that is their is no breakdown into particular categories and in our opinion this besmirches the good name of you the London taxi-cab driver. So let us assure you we are working extremely hard and we shall be seeking additional figures and pursuing with whatever quango/agency/body/authority answers to many questions until the figures released by the Metropolitan Police and Transport for London are clear and transparent.

Let's be totally honest the Metropolitan Police must hold an actual breakdown of these figures, if they don't it would mean they are unable to distinguish between a car/mini-cab and taxi-cab and that would not be good or competent policing.

If you wish to join the RMT and its London taxi branch please do so at or contact the branch via mobile/text/email.