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News Report Page 10 of 11
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Mental Health Helpline Rated Highly

AN innovative new service which aims to help people suffering from mental health problems has received outstanding feedback from people using it. The well being and mental health helplines' texting service, established by Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust (LSCFT), has been gathering satisfaction ratings since it opened in September 2019. And staff in the team are delighted that latest results show that 100% of people who have used the service say they would use it again.

Perri McGovern, Acting Service Manager in the team, said:- "Since the launch of the texting service the feedback received so far has been amazing, with 100% of people who filled in our questionnaire saying they would use the service again. They felt the support they received helped them, which is exactly what this service was set up to do. As a team we are delighted to be able to provide support in this new and innovative way. I would urge anyone who is suffering with a mental health problem to get in touch with our team for support. This includes those in crisis or just suffering with day to day problems or issues."

The helpline, which can be contacted on:- 08009154640 or be texting:- 'hello' to 07862022846, is open:-

Monday to Friday, between 7pm and 11pm.

Saturday to Sunday, from 12 noon to 12 midnight.

This service is available to anyone experiencing any type of mental health issue.

Merseyside breakfast clubs could grab a grand

MERSEYSIDE Schools could receive a ₤1000 boost from Kellogg's. The grants will help breakfast clubs give pupils the best start to the day. Schools can apply by visiting:- Kelloggs.Co.UK.  The Kellogg's Breakfast Club programme has opened grant applications for Schools that need funding, helping to provide breakfast to children in communities that need it the most. The funding has been enabled by a new range of cereals called:- 'W.K. Kellogg' that donates 10p to good causes for every pack sold. The range includes new W.K. Kellogg by Kids, a no added sugar cereal which contains fruit and veg. Breakfast clubs are critical for many Schools, 68% of Teachers believe pupils would struggle to concentrate in class without their breakfast club, according to a report by Kellogg's.  The Kellogg's Breakfast Clubs programme supports over 3,000 breakfast clubs, investing more than ₤4million since 1998, by providing training, grants and food. Chris Silcock, managing director for Kellogg's UK and Ireland, said:- "Kellogg's has supported breakfast clubs in the UK for 22 years and we are delighted to be able to support Schools once again through our grants programme in 2020. We are proud to have established many breakfast clubs up and down the country that contribute vastly to improving children's attendance and attainment as well as alleviating hunger in some cases. It's not just the children that benefit; it's a lifeline for parents too."

Taxi team's results are driven by public safety

On Patrol: Licensing Enforcement officers at work in the City centre.

LICENSING Enforcement Officers in Liverpool took action against more than 1,400 Taxi and Private Hire Drivers in 2019, Council figures show. End of year numbers for the Council's Licensing Enforcement Team show that offences committed included:- driving without insurance and charging too much for fares.

In total, Officers prosecuted 56 drivers, many of whom were Private Hire Drivers who agreed to take passengers who had not booked the journey in advance; an offence known as plying for hire. Officers issued a further 279 written warnings to drivers who had been found to have defective tyres or other parts or who were not displaying their badge or Taxi plate. Drivers who were caught by the team included those licensed by the neighbouring Authorities:- Sefton, Knowsley and Wirral. They also came from as far afield as:- Manchester, Rossendale and Wolverhampton.

Working with the City's Taxi trade, Officers also issued 863 fines; the majority of these to private motorists who had illegally parked on the City's Taxi ranks. This is an ongoing concern for Liverpool's Taxi drivers.

Throughout the year, the team also took part in Operation Topaz, which aims to identify cabbies flouting the rules during the City's match days. Undercover licensing Officers patrol popular Taxi spots outside the football grounds, often posing as football fans looking for a ride home.

In 1 recent case, Private Hire Driver Tariq Ahmed, who is licensed with Sefton Council, was caught by Officers following the Liverpool vs Napoli match in December 2019. Ahmed, of Rodney Street, Birkenhead, was seen agreeing to carry 3 fans who had not pre-booked the journey. Ahmed admitted plying for hire and driving without insurance when facing the City's Magistrates. He was ordered to ₤487 in fines and costs and given 6 penalty points.

Operation Topaz and other enforcement initiatives will continue throughout 2020.

Chair of Liverpool City Council's Licensing Committee, Cllr Christine Banks said:- "The Licensing Enforcement Team has been extremely active during the past year. Team members are out at all times of the day and night ensuring that Taxi and Private Hire Drivers are playing by the rules in the interests of the safety and security of members of the public.  Residents and visitors to our City have the right to travel safe in the knowledge that they are not being ripped off or driven illegally. Over the past year, we have introduced many new initiatives to make travelling by Taxi even easier. These have included random drug testing for drivers, the introduction of a new knowledge test for drivers and giving passengers the ability to pay by card in Hackney Cabs. In Liverpool, we are lucky enough to have a great set of Taxi and Private Hire Drivers, the vast majority of who take pride in their work, play by the rules and are a real asset to our City.  For those who do not want to play fair, we will continue to work tirelessly to stop you."

For more information about Taxi Licensing in Liverpool visit:- Liverpool.Gov.UK and search for:- 'Taxi Licensing.'

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