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GMB Union welcome Manchester City Council move to remove requirement for PHV operator stickers

Updated: Jul 24, 2023


Image credit: GMB Union North West & Irish

Manchester City Council are the latest authority to agree to the removal of operator stickers for minicab drivers licensed in the area.


The result of the decision in Manchester follows previous success in Southampton and Oldham. This will now mean that private hire vehicle (PHV) drivers in these areas will no longer need to display operator stickers, freeing them up to work for more than one operator, and they will no longer be driving around advertising operators for free or be restricted to working for one operator.

GMB Union has worked with Manchester City Licensing and Councillors to enable the changes in private hire service delivery.


Following a campaign from the GMB Union and its reps Habib Rehman and Ali Haydor on removing the operator livery on private hire vehicles throughout the UK, Manchester City Council Licensing committee agreed to recommendations put forward by licensing officers to remove operators’ names and bonnet stickers, improve testing procedures and improve age limits and emissions legislation to assist drivers who are feeling the bite of the cost-of-living crisis.


In early 2023 GMB Union approached Manchester City Council raising concerns they had over the livery policy and has since worked with Manchester City council to work on a change which would not compromise public safety but work for all stakeholders.

Currently GMB Union are working alongside many other authorities to help deliver change to livery policies and will announce them as and when they change with more in the pipeline.


Habib Rehman, GMB North West and Irish lead rep said: “Manchester private hire drivers have been waiting for this change for a very long time. We at GMB Union welcome Manchester licensing departments decision around signage on private hire vehicles and taxi issues, and will continue working with them to bring about more positive changes.


“It is great to see Manchester City Council leading and working with us on this campaign to support the private hire trade in the city. From everyone at GMB we would like to thank the licensing officers and the licensing committee for delivering this. Also, a huge thank you to the operators who supported us on this important change.


“GMB also supported the changes which Dave Lawrie has been fighting for and likewise Dave has supported the GMB Union's position on the removal of the operator livery. We are here to support and work with others to try and bring about positive change in the industry.

“Due to our many successes, drivers are now, more than before, aware of their rights. They are aware that the control imposed by the single operator sticker signage policy is unjust. Private hire drivers desire more control over their working lives, including increased job security, more freedom and potential for higher pay and putting a stop to the behaviour of some operators who rule through a culture of bullying and fear.”


Alan Collinge Regional Organiser responsible for taxi and private hire, also said: "This is part of GMBs national strategy, our other great concern is driver safety as verbal and physical assault is a common issue drivers face, CCTV and greater public understanding is required in solving this scourge."


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