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East Renfrewshire taxi drivers ‘grossly let down’ by authorities not policing taxi ranks says trade rep

Updated: Jan 12

East Renfrewshire's licensed taxi drivers have expressed their frustration and disappointment with the local council's parking enforcement department and the East Renfrewshire branch of Police Scotland.

They claim that their repeated concerns about members of the public persistently parking on taxi ranks have not been adequately addressed, leading to disruptions in their ability to ply for hire and make a living.

Under the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982, section 21 (7), it is an offence for any vehicle other than a taxi to occupy a designated taxi rank during the appointed periods. Offenders are subject to fines, with East Renfrewshire Council setting the penalty at a maximum of £50. Both parking enforcement and Police Scotland have the authority to issue fines to those who violate these regulations without the need for an observation period.

In response to this ongoing issue, East Renfrewshire's taxi drivers are contemplating staging protests if their grievances continue to go unheeded.

John Paul Duffy, Chairman of the East Renfrewshire Hire Car Forum, expressed the gravity of the situation, stating: "This has been a major issue for drivers for some time. They feel that they have been grossly let down by the council’s parking enforcement department and Police Scotland for their complete lack of action."

Duffy further highlighted the challenges faced by drivers when confronting individuals who illegally park on taxi ranks. He mentioned an incident in which a female driver was physically assaulted after requesting that someone vacate the taxi rank. Despite drivers reporting such violations to the parking enforcement department, there has been limited response and follow-up.

Duffy added: “In November of last year (2023), the Scottish Private Hire Association, whom I’m also Chairman for the East Renfrewshire branch, campaigned to re-establish the Hire Car Forum after a 17 year hiatus. The purpose of the forum is for representatives of the trade to engage with the council and Police Scotland on taxi and private hire issues. 

“After the inaugural meeting, the council and Police Scotland carried out a day of action where they enforced the parking laws on the ranks. However, as soon as they left, the problem immediately returned. This was the only day in 2023 that the council and the Police took this sort of action. We need to see a permanent solution to this issue. 

“We have called on the council to install ANPR cameras on the Busby Road, Kennishead Road and Mearns Road ranks to issue automatic fines to try and deter people from parking on them and restricting driver’s ability to work and earn. However, the council say that due to budget cuts, this isn’t an option.”


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