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Leeds taxi and PHV drivers to protest policy that could BAN cabbies totalling NINE penalty points

Image credits: Ross Campbell / LPHDO

Leeds taxi and private hire drivers will protest today outside Leeds Civic Hall over a licensing policy that could see them banned from working if they reach NINE or more points for minor driving convictions.

Leeds Private Hire Driver Organisation (LPHDO) have called on drivers to attend the demonstration today at 12pm outside the Leeds City Council buildings.

On 22 September 2021 the Council’s Executive Board agreed to consult on a new standard in the Taxi and Private Hire Suitability (Convictions) Policy relating to Minor Traffic or Vehicle related offences.

Part of Leeds City Council’s duty is to make sure taxi and private hire drivers, among other licence holders, are ‘fit and proper’ people for the role. This includes having a good driving record. Currently, people who apply for, or hold a taxi or private hire licence, can be granted a licence by the Council even if they have up to 12 points on their DVLA driving licence.

The Council revised its Suitability (Convictions) Policy in February 2020, bringing Leeds City Council standards into line with five neighbouring authorities and many more across the UK.

However, the standard relating to minor traffic or vehicle related offences was objected to by drivers, leading to further consideration of it.

Following a long consultation with stakeholders and further work, the Council’s Licensing Committee have recommended and Executive Board have agreed that the public should be consulted on the following new standard:

  • Applications for a taxi or private hire driver licence be refused when an applicant has 7 or more points for minor convictions showing on their driving licence;

  • Existing licence holders reaching 7 or 8 points for minor convictions will receive a warning and may be required to attend training; and

  • Existing licence holders reaching 9 or more points for minor convictions may have their licence refused or revoked.

The LPHDO are however concerned the new policy means drivers could lose their licence for minor wrongdoing.

According to Leeds Live, Ahmed Hussain, chair of the LPHDO, said: “If I had a little argument with family or heated conversation and the next-door neighbour called the police, say I’m not charged just a caution, the council can take my badge off me.

“We’re trying to highlight the problem with the policy.

“To show we’re unhappy with the way it's going, we’ll be doing more protests. We’ve got one planned tomorrow and another slow drive for the future until we can get the policy reversed.”


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