A new campaign has been launched by the private hire car industry demanding policy makers stop shutting off vehicular access on roads and end restricting transport options for vulnerable people.
The campaign, setup by the Licensed Private Hire Car Association (LPHCA) and Private Hire News (PHN), is aiming its campaign at all road users effected by street closures.
Around UK towns and cities, motorists have seen a raft of new road closures and reduced street space schemes. Without appropriate consultation and impact assessments, the LPHCA and PHN view the schemes as one of the primary reasons for increased poor air quality.
The minicab representatives acknowledge that anyone trying to earn a living on the streets, not just the many taxi and Private Hire Vehicle (PHV) drivers connected to the two organisations, are being hit hard.
Steve Wright MBE, Chairman of the LPHCA, said: “Street closures and streetscape reductions have proven to be traffic-generating and unenvironmentally friendly UK-wide. The widely condemned closure of streets, reduced road space and imposition of poorly planned streetscape schemes, without appropriate consultation and impact assessments, is in our view one of the primary reasons for increased poor air quality.
“Furthermore, this causes problems picking-up and dropping-off disabled people, the elderly and the vulnerable at many destinations where a Private Hire Vehicle (PHV) or Taxi could usually take them to. The policy is not only compromising those dependent on 'door-to-door' services, it is failing to meet one of its primary alleged objectives of improving social distancing.
“Many passengers that would be getting straight in to and out of a PHV or Taxi, often after dark, are having to walk great distances and pass many others who are out and about. Not only does this compromise public safety, it compromises social distancing too.”
Alan Wright, Managing Director of Private Hire News, said: “There is already evidence of 'u-turns' with some road and street closers, where the people have made it clear these mad decisions are unacceptable. They are not only affecting motorists, they are also affecting local businesses in a time when they need all the help they can get.
“We are asking for your help to spread the 'Stop Shutting Streets' campaign as far and wide as possible, right across the UK. Please sign our petition, share our video and join the battle!“