UK News: Minicab drivers must pay congestion charge after union loses High Court case - - PressFrom - United Kingdom
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UK NewsMinicab drivers must pay congestion charge after union loses High Court case

13:55  24 july  2019
13:55  24 july  2019 Source:   msn.com

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Minicab drivers are launching a legal action against the London mayor, Sadiq Khan, accusing him of discrimination against a largely ethnic minority workforce by making them pay the congestion Until now, minicabs and black cabs have been exempt from the existing £11.50 congestion charge .

Congestion Charge payments . London Road User Charging . Auto Pay The automated payment system will record the number of charging days a vehicle travels within the charging zone each month and automatically take payment from your debit card, credit card or via direct debit each month.

Minicab drivers must pay congestion charge after union loses High Court case © Philip Toscano The union argued Mr Khan’s decision disproportionately affects BAME drivers (PA)

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan’s decision to introduce the congestion charge for minicab drivers is not unlawfully discriminatory, the High Court has ruled.

The Independent Workers Union of Great Britain (IWGB) claimed removing minicabs’ exemption from the £11.50 daily fee indirectly discriminates against a 94% black and minority ethnic (BAME) workforce.

The union argued Mr Khan’s decision, which came into effect in April, disproportionately affects BAME drivers, while drivers of London’s traditional black cabs – 88% of whom are white – remain exempt from the charge.

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Taxis & minicabs . Driving . Congestion Charge . The Congestion Charge is an £11.50 daily charge for driving a vehicle within the charging zone between 07:00 and 18:00, Monday to Friday.

The congestion charge also applies to Uber drivers (Andrew Matthews/PA). Minicab driver and IWGB UPHD London committee member Muhumed "If Sadiq Khan doesn't reverse this policy we will continue to fight it in the courts and in the streets." A spokesman for the Mayor said: "The number of

IWGB also claimed the decision disproportionately affects women, who are more likely to work part-time, and disabled passengers, whom they claim will be adversely affected by a reduction in the number of available minicabs.

But, giving judgment in London on Wednesday, Mr Justice Lewis dismissed IWGB’s claim.

The judge said the decision was “a proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim, namely the reduction of traffic and congestion within the congestion charge zone without reducing the number of designated wheelchair-accessible vehicles”.

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Minicab drivers have always been exempt from paying the congestion charge as we already pay a licence fee. Meanwhile, black cabs will remain exempt and face no such charge , even though the taxi fleet is older and more polluting than the minicab fleet.

Private hire drivers have blocked a major road in London in protest against a new congestion charge . From April 8, private hire vehicles, including minicabs The protest was organised by the Independent Workers' Union of Great Britain's (IWGB) United Private Hire Drivers (UPHD) branch, who believe

At a hearing earlier this month, Ben Collins QC, for the IWGB, told the court that Mr Khan’s decision “does serious harm” to BAME and female drivers, as well as disabled passengers.

He said: “Drivers are driven out of business or required to work hours which impact on their family, well-being and potentially health.

“Disabled passengers have their ability to travel to central London significantly affected.”

Mr Collins submitted: “The discriminatory effect of this measure wholly outweighs such limited benefits as the defendant is able to establish.”

But lawyers representing Mr Khan and TfL argued that the decision “is an important means of reducing road congestion and traffic within the congestion charge zone without reducing the number of wheelchair-accessible passenger transport vehicles”.

Martin Chamberlain QC said removing the exemption would “achieve significant and important road user, health and environmental benefits” and result in quicker journeys and cleaner air.

Penalty points and speeding convictions could be wiped out if high court challenge succeeds.
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