The taxi trade 'drive-in' on Monday 6 May, to protest at Boris Johnson’s inability to respond to the London taxi trades reasonable request for a taxi rank facility to service the Shangri-La Hotel at The Shard was a huge success. The protest, which focused on the nearby London Bridge station, attracted over a thousand drivers and created traffic disruption over a wide area of The City and south- east London.
Unite the union London Cab Section, which was one of the main taxi unions supporting the protest is now calling for Boris Johnson to reverse his counterproductive policy of cutting staff within London Taxi & Private Hire, a department of TfL, while he has failed to recognise the deteriorating levels of service to London’s licensed taxi drivers which has occurred due to his policy. This policy, SIPS, has been ideologically driven and has undermined the taxi trades representation at many levels of TfL planning.
Unite the union is further calling for Boris Johnson to respond positively to the immediate issue of a taxi rank at the Shangri-La Hotel. Unite notes the contrast between his failure to engage positively with the taxi trade on this issue and the record of his predecessor, Ken Livingstone on taxi issues.
Unite the union would like to thank members of the travelling public who showed their support for the protest on the day. Boris Johnson needs to get down of his pedestal and show some real leadership on this issue. The sad reality is the mayor seems unable to get to grips with many simple issues impacting on taxi drivers and the London travelling public who use their service.