Cabbies Face Stricter Checks
applying to be taxi drivers in Liverpool are to face more rigorous
checks on their background in the future. And those with
criminal convictions will have to have to prove their rehabilitation
for a longer period before they will be considered for a licence.
Last week's meeting of the Licensing Committee agreed to amend the
guidelines when assessing applications. Among the main changes
· Applicants will have to have had no convictions for five to seven
years as opposed to three to five years currently.
· Any applicant with five or more convictions will generally not be
granted a licence although they will have the opportunity to have
their application considered by the committee. At present applicants
can have an unlimited number of convictions provided the most recent
was over three years old.
· It will be emphasised to applicants they must disclose convictions
and not rely on disclosure by the Criminal Records Bureau.
The committee also agreed to a request by the Liverpool Safeguarding
Board, a joint forum for agreeing how services and professional
groups should co-operate to safeguard children in Liverpool; that
they should be allowed to make comments on the suitability of new
applicants. All applicants for taxicab and private hire
licences are subjected to a check by the Criminal Records Bureau and
the relevant legislation says they shall only be granted a licence
if councils are satisfied “they are a fit and proper person”.
Cllr Malcolm Kelly, Chair of the Licensing Committee, said:-
“We adopted the guidelines 15 years ago and there is a feeling that
it is time we reviewed them. At the time when they were
introduced we went for the minimum timescales recommended after a
conviction – now we are looking at the upper levels suggested. This
is not because of the experiences we have had with applications but
we want to be absolutely sure that the public are being safeguarded
as thoroughly as possible.
The taxi trade is in support of these new guidelines which they
recognise are fair and responsible. I would emphasise that we
will treat each application on its merits and we are not seeking to
stop anybody who may have had minor convictions some time ago from
becoming a taxi driver. What we are doing is providing the level of
safety that the public and taxi trade would want us to do.”
LETTER TO THE EDITOR:- "My Air Conditioning Nightmare...!"
"I am just one of 10 million people in the UK who suffer from
Raynaud's, a condition in which the blood supply to the extremities
is temporarily restricted due to exposure to cold temperatures or
more specifically to any slight change in temperature. This means
that for most of the year I need to take precautions by wrapping up
warmly and use portable heating aids. This is in order to prevent my
hands changing colour dramatically because of the reduced blood flow
which can result in my fingers becoming extremely painful and
developing into gangrenous ulcers.
In the last few years Air Conditioning in public places has become
Attending meetings, eating in restaurants, visiting
cinemas and worst of all shopping in supermarkets has become a
nightmare. I only have to step into the frozen food section, even
with gloves on and my hands go numb with cold. The pain is so
intense from the cold air flowing around that my food shopping is
now minimised, as I simply can’t cope.
The fact that the cold
affects the fingers so dramatically means that it is almost
impossible to open a purse and handle money or credit cards.
Why do we have to have this constant flow of chilly air everywhere?
I know it is expensive to run and uses energy which the planet could
well do without.
I realise that not everyone wants to be warm but in
the UK's climate it is not as if we need to go indoors to cool down.
Surely there could be a happy medium.
I am sure there must be thousands of your readers who agree with the
fact that air conditioning can be a most unpleasant intrusion into
daily life which we could well do without."
Anne H Mawdsley MBE
If anyone has any comments on this topic or would like to find out
more about Raynaud’s, please either