Dear Waverley Borough Council,

1) Please advise if you have produced, or currently intend to produce, a list of wheelchair accessible:
a) taxis
and
b) private hire vehicles
under the powers set out in S167 of the Equality Act 2010.

2) Please identify how many a) taxi and b) PHV drivers have applied for medical / physical impairment exemption under S166 of the Equality Act 2010 since S166 was commenced. If you've created a list under S167, please identify how many of the exemptions were in place before S167 and how many have been put in since.

3) Please state whether you voluntarily compiled a list of accessible taxis and private hire vehicles following the Department for Transport's guidance of 15th September 2010, which stated, in relation to section 167, “although the list of designated vehicles will have no actual effect in law until the duties are commenced, we would urge licensing authorities to start maintaining a list as soon as possible for the purpose of liaising with the trade and issuing exemption certificates”. If you did produce such a voluntary list, please indicate when you did so, and provide the current list.

If you have produced a list of wheelchair accessible taxis and/or private hire vehicles under S167, or are going to, please tell me the following.

4) The date the list was instated or by which you intend to do so.

5) The accessibility requirements of a taxi for it to appear on the list.

6) How you intend to enforce drivers' compliance with S165.

7) The list.

Yours faithfully,

Doug Paulley

foi@waverley.gov.uk, Waverley Borough Council

Thank you for your email to the Information Rights service regarding
Freedom of Information or Data Protection.

Please take this automated response as acknowledgement of your email. Any
Freedom of Information or Data Protection requests will be formally
acknowledged within 3 working days. We aim to respond to all Freedom of
Information requests within 20 working days of receipt, and all Data
Protection requests within 40 calendar days of receipt.

For further information about our services please visit
[1]http://www.waverley.gov.uk/info/200031/d...

This email, and any files attached to it, is confidential and solely for
the use of the individual or organisation to whom it is addressed.
The opinions expressed in this email are not necessarily those of Waverley
Borough Council.
The Council is not responsible for any changes made to the message after
it has been sent. If you are not the intended recipient of this email or
the person responsible for delivering it to them you may not copy it,
forward it or otherwise use it for any purpose or disclose its contents to
any other person. To do so may be unlawful.
Please visit our website at http://www.waverley.gov.uk

References

Visible links
1. http://www.waverley.gov.uk/info/200031/d...

Freedom of Information, Waverley Borough Council

Dear Doug Paulley,

Freedom of Information Request: Ref WAV 1402924.

Thank you for your email requesting information about taxis and private
hired vehicles.

We will deal with your request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000
and it is our intention to send you a response by 16 May 2017, 20 working
days from the receipt of your email.

Yours sincerely,

Ellie Dosanjh
Legal Services Apprentice
Waverley Borough Council
[1]www.waverley.gov.uk
Direct Line: 01483 523403

show quoted sections

Freedom of Information, Waverley Borough Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Paulley,

 

Freedom of Information request - WAV1402924

 

I am writing in response to your request for information regarding
wheelchair accessible taxis.

 

I can confirm the information below which is set out alongside your
original question for your ease of reference.

 

1)    Please advise if you have produced, or currently intend to produce,
a list of wheelchair accessible: a) taxis and b) private hire vehicles
under the powers set out in S167 of the Equality Act 2010. A working /
draft document has been prepared in relation to both taxis and private
hire vehicles. However, a formal document will be placed before the
licensing regulatory committee for consideration in due course. It is
anticipated that the final approved document will be made available for
publication on the Council’s website.  

2)    Please identify how many a) taxi and b) PHV drivers have applied for
medical / physical impairment exemption under S166 of the Equality Act
2010 since S166 was commenced. If you've created a list under S167, please
identify how many of the exemptions were in place before S167 and how many
have been put in since. In relation to both (a) and (b) the response is
none.

3)    Please state whether you voluntarily compiled a list of accessible
taxis and private hire vehicles following the Department for Transport's
guidance of 15th September 2010, which stated, in relation to section 167,
“although the list of designated vehicles will have no actual effect in
law until the duties are commenced, we would urge licensing authorities to
start maintaining a list as soon as possible for the purpose of liaising
with the trade and issuing exemption certificates”. If you did produce
such a voluntary list, please indicate when you did so, and provide the
current list. If you have produced a list of wheelchair accessible taxis
and/or private hire vehicles under S167, or are going to, please tell me
the following.

·         The date the list was instated or by which you intend to do so.
Waverley has kept an informal list since a date unknown pre-2008. A formal
document (to comply with guidance and legislation) is in the process of
consideration with publication intended following approval at committee
hearing and in the near future.

·         The accessibility requirements of a taxi for it to appear on the
list. The accessibility requirements for the formal list are currently
under consideration and to be confirmed.

·         How you intend to enforce drivers' compliance with S165. It is
likely that this will be carried out by a variety of means, including test
purchase, spot checks at the rank, and monitoring and investigation of
complaints.

·         The list. The formal list is not yet confirmed but it is
anticipated that this will be made available on the Council’s website at
[1]http://www.waverley.gov.uk/taxilicensing however, in the meantime, the
informal list referred to above is attached which includes both taxis
(hackney carriage) and private hire vehicles.

 

In the event you are dissatisfied with the handling of your request, you
have the right to ask for an internal review, which will be carried out by
a separate Council Officer.

Please remember to quote your reference number in all future
correspondence.

If you are still not satisfied with the outcome of the internal review,
you have the right to apply directly to the information Commissioner for a
decision.  The Information Commissioner can be contacted at: Information
Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9
5AF.

Telephone: 0303 123 1113

Website: [2]www.ico.gov.uk

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Gillian Carson-Jones

Information Rights Coordinator (temp)

Policy and Governance

Waverley Borough Council

Working Monday, Tuesday (office hours) and Wednesday morning

[3][Waverley Borough Council request email]

 

You can find information about our services at [4]www.waverley.gov.uk

 

 

 

This email, and any files attached to it, is confidential and solely for
the use of the individual or organisation to whom it is addressed.
The opinions expressed in this email are not necessarily those of Waverley
Borough Council.
The Council is not responsible for any changes made to the message after
it has been sent. If you are not the intended recipient of this email or
the person responsible for delivering it to them you may not copy it,
forward it or otherwise use it for any purpose or disclose its contents to
any other person. To do so may be unlawful.
Please visit our website at http://www.waverley.gov.uk

References

Visible links
1. http://www.waverley.gov.uk/taxilicensing
2. http://www.ico.gov.uk/
3. mailto:[Waverley Borough Council request email]
4. http://www.waverley.gov.uk/

Dear Freedom of Information,

Please can you pass on my thanks; your response has been particularly helpful and informative, and I am grateful.

Yours sincerely,

Doug Paulley

foi@waverley.gov.uk, Waverley Borough Council

Thank you for your email to the Information Rights service regarding
Freedom of Information or Data Protection.

Please take this automated response as acknowledgement of your email. Any
Freedom of Information or Data Protection requests will be formally
acknowledged within 3 working days. We aim to respond to all Freedom of
Information requests within 20 working days of receipt, and all Data
Protection requests within 40 calendar days of receipt.

For further information about our services please visit
[1]http://www.waverley.gov.uk/info/200031/d...

This email, and any files attached to it, is confidential and solely for
the use of the individual or organisation to whom it is addressed.
The opinions expressed in this email are not necessarily those of Waverley
Borough Council.
The Council is not responsible for any changes made to the message after
it has been sent. If you are not the intended recipient of this email or
the person responsible for delivering it to them you may not copy it,
forward it or otherwise use it for any purpose or disclose its contents to
any other person. To do so may be unlawful.
Please visit our website at http://www.waverley.gov.uk

References

Visible links
1. http://www.waverley.gov.uk/info/200031/d...

Ellie Dosanjh, Waverley Borough Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Paulley,

 

Freedom of Information Request: Ref WAV 1403325.

 

I am writing in response to your request for information regarding taxi
services for wheelchair users.

 

I can confirm the following information and details attached.

 

Please see our response in blue alongside your original questions for your
ease of reference.

1) The Government guidance states: "Whilst LAs are under no specific legal
obligation to maintain a list under section 167, the Government recommends
strongly that they do so. Without such a list the requirements of section
165 of the Act do not apply, and drivers may continue to refuse the
carriage of wheelchair users, fail to provide them with assistance, or to
charge them extra."
Please can you indicate whether you do now have a list of wheelchair
accessible taxis under your powers set out in Section 167 of the Equality
Act 2010, and/or a list of wheelchair accessible private hire vehicles? A
draft list has been prepared following updated training, although this has
not yet been published on Waverley’s website. We are in the final stages
of collating and verifying the information and hope that this will be
published shortly with a target date of 8 December 2017.

2) If you do now have such a list, please provide information in response
to the following questions 2a) to 2j):
2a) On what date was it put in place? Please see our response to question
1 above. A list of wheelchair accessible taxis / private hire vehicles has
previously been made available to the public upon request.
2b) The statutory guidance states "The Government therefore recommends
that a vehicle should only be included in the authority’s (S167) list if
it would be possible for the user of a “reference wheelchair” to enter,
leave and travel in the passenger compartment in safety and reasonable
comfort whilst seated in their wheelchair."
Is this the definition you have used for a taxi or PHV to be considered
wheelchair accessible for the purposes of the list? Yes.

2c) The statutory guidance states: "Before drivers can be subject to the
duties under section 165 of the Act, the LA must first publish their list
of designated vehicles, and clearly mark it as ‘designated for the
purposes of section 165 of the Act’. LAs should ensure that their
designated lists are made easily available to passengers, and that vehicle
owners and drivers are made aware.  Lists should set out the details of
the make and model of the vehicle, together with specifying whether the
vehicle is a taxi or private hire vehicle, and stating the name of
operator."
Have you published your list? Is it marked "designated for the purposes of
Section 165 of the Act"? Is the make and model of each vehicle listed? Is
each vehicle identified as a taxi or a private hire vehicle? Is the name
of the operator of each vehicle given in the list? Have you made owners
and drivers of vehicles on the list aware that their vehicle has been
listed? As set out at question 1 above, the list has not yet been
published, but this is due to take place shortly. I confirm that the draft
document includes information on the make and model, category of vehicle
(taxi or private hire) as well as operator details. I confirm that
owners/drivers are aware of the listing and this will be published and
made available to owners/drivers and the public.

2d) The guidance states: "it would also be helpful to include information
about the size and weight of wheelchair that can be accommodated, and
whether wheelchairs that are larger than a “reference wheelchair” can be
accommodated."
Does your list include information on each vehicle as to the size and
weight of wheelchair that can be accommodated, and whether wheelchairs
larger than a "reference wheelchair" can be accommodated? No – the list
allows enquiries to be made directly.

2e) The guidance states: "We encourage LAs to provide drivers of taxis and
PHVs who are not exempt from the duties with clear guidance on their
duties with respect to the carriage of passengers in wheelchairs, either
as part of existing driver-facing guidance, or as supplementary
communication."
Have you provided non-exempt taxi/PHV drivers with such guidance? A series
of interactive training sessions have taken place on an individual / small
group basis.

2f) The guidance states: "We recommend that licensing authority rules for
drivers are updated to make clear when a meter can and cannot be left
running".
Have you updated such rules to make this clear? In addition to the
training sessions referred to at question 2e above, new applicant drivers
receive information during the course of the application process.

2g) The guidance states: "Section 172 of the Act enables vehicle owners to
appeal against the decision of a LA to include their vehicles on the
designated list. That appeal should be made to the Magistrate’s Court, or
in Scotland the sheriff, and must be made within 28 days of the vehicle in
question being included on the LA’s published list."
Please tell me how many such applications have been made to the
Magistrates Court, and how many have been successful. Nil / not
applicable.

2h) How many drivers has the authority prosecuted for discriminatory
behaviour contrary to S165 of the Act? How many such prosecutions were
successful? What were the sentences? None / not applicable / not
applicable.

2i) How many drivers licensed by yourselves have been prosecuted by other
people or bodies for failure to comply with S165 of the Act? How many such
prosecutions were successful? What were the sentences? None / not
applicable / not applicable.

2j) Where drivers have been prosecuted under S165 of the Act, thus
affecting their standing as a "fit and proper person", what resultant
disciplinary action have you taken in respect of their taxi or private
hire vehicle drivers' licenses? Not applicable.

3) If you do not have a S167 list or lists now, please indicate if you
still intend to produce such a list. Please see our response to question 1
above – our draft is due to be published shortly.

4) If you don't have a S167 list but do intend to produce one, please
provide information in response to questions 4a) and 4b) below.
4a) Please indicate when you intend to have the list in place. Please see
our response to question 1 above.
4b) Where you have already made relevant decisions, please indicate
whether you intend to comply with the elements of the statutory guidance
set out in 2b) to 2f) above. Please see our responses to questions 2 b to
2 f inclusive as set out above.

5) Irrespective of whether you have created a list or not or indeed
whether you intend to create such a list, since 2010 you have been obliged
to process applications under Section 166 of the Equality Act for driver
medical exemptions from the duty to transport and not discriminate against
wheelchair users. The Guidance states; "the Act allows LAs to grant
exemptions from the duties to individual drivers. These provisions are
contained in section 166, and were commenced on 1st October 2010."

5a) How many exemptions have you granted under S166 of the Equality Act
2010? None.

5b) The guidance states: "We understand that some licensing authorities
have already put in place procedures for accessing and exempting drivers,
and as an absolute minimum, we think that the evidence provided should be
in the form of a letter or report from a general practitioner."
Do you accept or require a letter or report from a GP to process
applications for driver exemption under S166? In addition to the
application form, we require a letter / report from GP or specialist
medical practitioner as part of the process, and which is subject to
consideration and review by an independent medical practitioner.

5c) The guidance states: "The Government’s view is that decisions on
exemptions will be fairer and more objective if medical assessments are
undertaken by professionals who have been specifically trained and who are
independent of the applicant. We would recommend that independent medical
assessors are used where a long-term exemption is to be issued, and that
LAs use assessors who hold appropriate professional qualifications and who
are not open to bias because of a personal or commercial connection to the
applicant"
Have you appointed independent medical assessors to determine applications
for medical exemption under S166? An arrangement with an independent
medical assessor is in place.

5d) Please provide a copy of your application form for driver exemption
under S166. Please see document attached.

5e) The guidance states: "Section 172 of the Act enables drivers to appeal
against the decision of a LA not to issue an exemption certificate. That
appeal should be made to the Magistrate’s Court, or a sheriff in Scotland,
and must be made within 28 days beginning with the date of the refusal."
How many appeals against refusal to issue S166 exemptions have been heard?
None.

5f) How many appeals against refusal to issue S166 exemptions were
successful? Not applicable.

6) The guidance states: "We would therefore recommend that LAs also
publish a list of vehicles that are accessible to passengers in
wheelchairs who are able to transfer from their wheelchair into a seat
within the vehicle. It should be made clear however that this list of
vehicles has not been published for the purposes of section 165 of the Act
and drivers of those vehicles are therefore not subject to the legal
duties to provide assistance."
Do you currently publish a list of vehicles that are accessible to
passengers in wheelchairs who are able to transfer from their wheelchairs
into a seat within the vehicle? Not currently.

 

 

 

In the event you are dissatisfied with the handling of your request, you
have the right to ask for an internal review, which will be carried out by
a separate Council Officer. Please remember to quote your reference number
in all future correspondence.

 

If you are still not satisfied with the outcome of the internal review,
you have the right to apply directly to the information Commissioner for a
decision.  The Information Commissioner can be contacted at: Information
Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9
5AF.

Telephone: 0303 123 1113

Website: [1]www.ico.gov.uk

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Ellie Dosanjh

Legal Services Apprentice

Waverley Borough Council

[2]www.waverley.gov.uk

Direct Line: 01483 523403

 

 

This email, and any files attached to it, is confidential and solely for
the use of the individual or organisation to whom it is addressed.
The opinions expressed in this email are not necessarily those of Waverley
Borough Council.
The Council is not responsible for any changes made to the message after
it has been sent. If you are not the intended recipient of this email or
the person responsible for delivering it to them you may not copy it,
forward it or otherwise use it for any purpose or disclose its contents to
any other person. To do so may be unlawful.
Please visit our website at http://www.waverley.gov.uk

References

Visible links
1. http://www.ico.gov.uk/
2. http://www.waverley.gov.uk/

Doug Paulley left an annotation ()

That last response relates to a subsequent FOI request at https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/s...

Freedom of Information, Waverley Borough Council

Dear Mr Paulley,

Freedom of Information Request: Ref WAV 1403693.

Thank you for your email requesting information about Taxi Licensing.

We will deal with your request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000
and it is our intention to send you a response by 31 May 2018, 20 working
days from the receipt of your email.

Yours sincerely,

Ellie Dosanjh
Legal Services Apprentice
Waverley Borough Council
[1]www.waverley.gov.uk
Direct Line: 01483 523403

show quoted sections

Looking for an EU Authority?

You can request documents directly from EU Institutions at our sister site AskTheEU.org . Find out more .

AskTheEU.org