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"PRIVATE PARTS ON SHOW" triggers council to introduce dress code banning 'short shorts' for cabbies

Updated: Oct 11, 2021

Image credit : PXfuel

Taxi and private hire drivers will no longer be able to wear shorts which do not reach knee-length after reports of drivers' "private parts" being on show.

Tameside Council are introducing a number of new licensing regulations for licensed drivers, with one of them being a new dress code, which although not regimented, does set out a list of minimum requirements with guidelines on what garments are considered acceptable and unacceptable.

Tameside Council put their proposals to a consultation for drivers and members of the public to comment.

Some of the responses received included:

  • “Dress code as we are self-employed it is up to us what we wear as long as it is appropriate and not offensive” (PHV Driver, Tameside)

  • “I don't think there is need to change the dress code as long as the driver is dressed appropriately.” (Hackney Driver, Manchester)

  • “I am worried about dress code because we the private hire drive or hackney drivers spend many hours sitting and driving so we wear a dress who we feel comfortable if there is dress code, I am afraid it can make us uncomfortable.” (PHV Driver, Manchester)

  • “Dress code is very subjective and could put pressure on drivers who are already scrutinised and looked down on by the general public.” (Public, age 25-34, Bolton)

  • “I don't really think dress code is that important. Taxi drivers should be allowed to wear whatever they want as long as it isn't offensive or inflammatory.” (Public, age 18-24, Bury)

  • “Agree with all proposal except for Dress Code, which will have little benefit to the public.” (Organisation, Brandlesholme Community Centre)

  • “I couldn’t care less what my driver wears, if I’m honest. as long as it’s not kind of, they look like they’ve just rolled out of bed, kind of thing”.

The council has said that the purpose of the dress code is to set a standard that provides a positive image of the licensed hackney carriage and private hire trade in Greater Manchester, promoting public and driver safety.

During discussions it was revealed that in the worst case scenario, there had been complaints from members of the public about drivers wearing shorts which allowed their private parts being “on show”.

The new agreed standards of dress code, says: “All clothing worn by those working as private hire or hackney carriage drivers must be in good condition and the driver must keep good standards of personal hygiene.

“As a minimum standard whilst working a licensed driver, males should wear trousers and a shirt/t-shirt or polo shirt which has a full body and short/long sleeves. Knee length shorts are acceptable. Exceptions related to faith or disability are accepted.

“As a minimum standard whilst working as a licensed driver, females should wear trousers, or a knee length skirt or dress, and a shirt/blouse/t-shirt or polo shirt which have a full body and a short/long sleeve. Knee length shorts are also acceptable. Exceptions related to faith or disability are accepted.

“Footwear whilst working as a licensed driver shall fit (i.e. be secure) around the toe and heel. Examples of unacceptable standard of dress Clothing that is not kept in a clean condition, free from holes, rips or other damage.

“Words or graphics on any clothing that is of an offensive or suggestive nature which might offend. Sportswear e.g. football/rugby kits including team shirts or beachwear (tracksuits are accepted).

“Sandals with no heel straps, flip flops or any other footwear not secure around the heel. The wearing of any hood or any other type of clothing that may obscure the driver’s vision or their identity.”


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