Unite the union press release
WHAT: Taxi drivers to protest at Wolverhampton council over Uber licensing
WHERE: Civic Centre, North Street, Wolverhampton, WV1 1RD
WHEN: Thursday 28 June 12:00 – 14:00
Taxi drivers from Coventry are set to cause disruption in the centre of Wolverhampton tomorrow (28 June) to protest over the council’s issuing of Uber licences.
The drivers are alarmed that Wolverhampton council has issued thousands of licences to Uber drivers, allowing them to operate in Coventry, bypassing that council’s rules and licensing regime.
The Conservatives’ Deregulation Act means that drivers and operators no longer have to be in the same area. Therefore an Uber driver receiving a licence in Wolverhampton is allowed to operate anywhere in the UK.
The protest which will coincide with lunchtime traffic is set to cause congestion on the city’s roads.
The number of Uber drivers operating in Coventry is threatening the livelihoods of fully licensed taxi drivers in the city who have to comply with a large number of criteria and regulations, which the Uber drivers can ignore.
Unite regional officer Alan Lewis said: “Coventry taxi drivers who play by the rules are facing having their livelihoods cut from under them by the unthinking actions of Wolverhampton council.
“The Conservative government has paved the way for indiscriminate councils to freely issue licences to Uber and other organisations which directly undermine strict taxi standards in other neighbouring councils.
“Wolverhampton council needs to end the race to the bottom, immediately stop this practice and withdraw licences for drivers not based in their area.”