S167 List of Accessible Taxis: update after 6 months - B previous date set

The request was successful.

Dear Derby City Council,

I am writing this Freedom of Information Request in relation to your Council's compliance or otherwise with the Government's statutory guidance on implementation of S165-167 of the Equality Act, relating to taxi services for wheelchair users. All taxi licensing bodies are obliged under S167(6) to have "due regard" to the document "Access for wheelchair users to taxis and private hire vehicles: statutory guidance" at https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/sy... . The questions I raise below should be interpreted as requests for recorded information under the Freedom of Information Act.

I have previously made a similar request to you in April 2017. 6+ months later, I am repeating the request with some variations. I am repeating because the Statutory Guidance states "We would expect these arrangements to take no more than a maximum of six months to put in place, following the commencement of these provisions" - "these provisions" having been commenced on 6th April.

In response to my previous FOI request on similar matters in April 2017, you indicated that you did not have a Section 167 list but were intending to create such a list in the relatively imminent future.

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?

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?
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?

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?

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?

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?

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?

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.

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?

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?

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?

3) If you do not have a S167 list or lists now, please indicate if you still intend to produce such a list.

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.
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.

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?

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?

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?

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

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?

5f) How many appeals against refusal to issue S166 exemptions were successful?

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?

Thank you

Yours faithfully,

Doug Paulley

FOI, Derby City Council

This is acknowledgement that your e-mail has been received by the Freedom
of Information team.  We will respond to you as soon as possible.

 

If you are making a Freedom of Information request you will receive a
response within the statutory 20 working day timescale.

 

Freedom of Information Team | Governance & Assurance | Resources
Directorate| Derby City Council, The Council House, Corporation Street,
Derby DE1 2FS | Telephone 01332 640763 | Minicom 01332 640666 | Web:
[1]www.derby.gov.uk

Proud of Derby

 

 

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FOI, Derby City Council

I acknowledge your request for information received on 4^th November 2017
about taxi services for wheelchairs.

Your request is being considered and you will receive the information
requested as soon as possible, but in any case by 4^th December 2017 the
statutory timescale of 20 working days as defined by the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 (FOI) unless the information requested is subject to
a statutory exemption on disclosure or the information contains reference
to a third party.

 

For your information, the Act defines a number of exemptions, which may
prevent release of the information you have requested. Some exemptions are
subject to a public interest test. There will be an assessment and if any
of the exemption categories apply and any relevant public interest test is
weighed in favour of withholding the information it will not be released.
You will be informed if this is the case, including your rights of appeal.

 

If the information you request contains reference to a third party then
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There may be a fee payable for supplying the information in the form of
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If you have any queries or concerns then please contact the

Freedom of Information Officer
Derby City Council
The Council House
Corporation Street
Derby
DE1 2FS

Telephone 01332 640763 or e-mail [1][Derby City Council request email]

Further information is also available from the Information Commissioner
at:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Telephone: 01625 545 700

[2]www.ico.org

Kind regards,

Freedom of Information Team | Organisation & Governance Directorate
| Derby City Council, Council House, Corporation Street, Derby
DE1 2FS| 01332 640763 | [3]www.derby.gov.uk

Proud of Derby

 

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FOI, Derby City Council

1 Attachment

Dear Doug,

 

Your request for information has been considered and the information
requested is attached.

 

For your information this request has cost the Council £25.00 to process.

 

Supply to you of any material does not give you the right to use it in a
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Freedom of Information Officer

Derby City Council

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Corporation Street
Derby
DE1 2FS

 

Telephone 01332 640763 or e-mail [1][Derby City Council request email]

 

Further information about Freedom of Information is available from the
Information Commissioner at:

 

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF 
Telephone:   01625 545 700

[2]www.ico.org.uk

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Freedom of Information Team | Organisation and Governance Directorate |
Derby City Council | The Council House| Corporation Street |Derby | DE1
2FS |Tel: 01332 640763 | [3]www.derby.gov.uk

 

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Dear Derby City Council,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Derby City Council's handling of my FOI request 'S167 List of Accessible Taxis: update after 6 months - B previous date set'.

You've indicated that your current list does not meet the requirements set out in the Government's statutory guidance in order for it to qualify as a S167 list, but that you intend to do so in the future.

Please could you therefore tell me, "Please indicate when you intend to have the list in place."

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/s...

Yours faithfully,

Doug Paulley

FOI, Derby City Council

This is acknowledgement that your e-mail has been received by the Freedom
of Information team.  We will respond to you as soon as possible.

 

If you are making a Freedom of Information request you will receive a
response within the statutory 20 working day timescale.

 

Freedom of Information Team | Governance & Assurance | Resources
Directorate| Derby City Council, The Council House, Corporation Street,
Derby DE1 2FS | Telephone 01332 640763 | Minicom 01332 640666 | Web:
[1]www.derby.gov.uk

Proud of Derby

 

 

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FOI, Derby City Council

Doug,

 

I acknowledge your email dated 07/12/17 concerning our previous response
to FOI 10728 for information on Taxi services for wheelchairs.

 

Although titled as requesting an internal review, the basis of your email
appears to be asking a supplementary question regarding our response.  I
will send the following additional question to the department that
provided the information for the original response for them to provide an
answer.

 

+------------------------------------------------------------------------+
|You've indicated that your current list does not meet the requirements |
|set out in the Government's statutory guidance in order for it to |
|qualify as a S167 list, but that you intend to do so in the future. |
| |
|  |
| |
|Please could you therefore tell me, "Please indicate when you intend to |
|have the list in place." |
| |
|  |
+------------------------------------------------------------------------+

 

If you have any queries or concerns then please contact the -

Freedom of Information Officer
Derby City Council
The Council House
Corporation Street
Derby
DE1 2FS

Telephone 01332 640763 or e-mail [1][Derby City Council request email]

Further information is also available from the Information Commissioner at
-

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Telephone: 01625 545 700

[2]www.ico.org

Kind regards,

Freedom of Information Team | Organisation & Governance Directorate
| Derby City Council, Council House, Corporation Street, Derby
DE1 2FS| 01332 640763 | [3]www.derby.gov.uk

Proud of Derby

 

 

show quoted sections

Dear FOI,

It's not a supplemental question. I requested the information in my original request.

"In response to my previous FOI request on similar matters in April 2017, you indicated that you did not have a Section 167 list but were intending to create such a list in the relatively imminent future.

"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. "

I was asking when the Council intends to have a list under the powers set out in S167 of the Equality Act. That information wasn't provided, hence my request for an internal review.

Thank you

Yours sincerely,

Doug Paulley

FOI, Derby City Council

This is acknowledgement that your e-mail has been received by the Freedom
of Information team.  We will respond to you as soon as possible.

 

If you are making a Freedom of Information request you will receive a
response within the statutory 20 working day timescale.

 

Freedom of Information Team | Governance & Assurance | Resources
Directorate| Derby City Council, The Council House, Corporation Street,
Derby DE1 2FS | Telephone 01332 640763 | Minicom 01332 640666 | Web:
[1]www.derby.gov.uk

Proud of Derby

 

 

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[2]derby.gov.uk/news

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FOI, Derby City Council

Dear Doug,

Thank you for your internal review request relating to Freedom of
Information Request 10728 received on 07/12/17.

The Council’s investigating officer will deal with your request and send
you the response by 09/01/18, 20 working days.  Although the Council must
ensure the review takes no longer than 20 working days, it can be extended
to 40 working days in exceptional circumstances.  We will let you  know if
this is the case.

Yours sincerely,

Freedom of Information Team | Organisation and Governance Directorate |
Derby City Council | The Council House| Corporation Street |Derby | DE1
2FS |Tel: [1]+44 (0) 1332 640763 | minicom number: [2]+44 (0) 1332
256666 | [3]www.derby.gov.uk

 

Proud of Derby

 

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Dear FOI,

I have requested that the ICO undertake a S50 assessment on the following basis:

Dear ICO

Please conduct a S50 assessment of this request:

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/s...

They have failed to respond to this element of my request:

> 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.

I asked for an internal review on 7th December but they failed to
supply a response so please conduct a S50 assessment of their handling
of their request, and of the above element 4a) in particular.

Thank you

Doug Paulley

Thank you

Yours sincerely,

Doug Paulley

FOI, Derby City Council

This is acknowledgement that your e-mail has been received by the Freedom
of Information team.  We will respond to you as soon as possible.

 

If you are making a Freedom of Information request you will receive a
response within the statutory 20 working day timescale.

 

Freedom of Information Team | Governance & Assurance | Resources
Directorate| Derby City Council, The Council House, Corporation Street,
Derby DE1 2FS | Telephone 01332 640763 | Minicom 01332 640666 | Web:
[1]www.derby.gov.uk

Proud of Derby

 

 

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FOI, Derby City Council

2 Attachments

  • Attachment

    Freedom of Information Request 10728 Internal Review Acknowledgement.html

    5K Download

  • Attachment

    Re FOI 10728 Supplementary Question.txt

    3K Download View as HTML

Dear Doug Paulley,

The attached internal review acknowledgement was sent to you on 7/12/17. The acknowledgement stated we would send you the review outcome by 9 January 2018.

Unfortunately, due to the workload of the investigating officer, we won't be able to send you the internal review response until 31 January or earlier, if possible.

We apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Yours sincerely,

Freedom of Information Team | Organisation and Governance Directorate | Derby City Council | The Council House| Corporation Street |Derby | DE1 2FS |Tel: +44 (0) 1332 640763 | minicom number: +44 (0) 1332 256666 | www.derby.gov.uk

Proud of Derby

show quoted sections

Dear FOI,

Not acceptable. You are delaying my research, and I shall ensure that I put this on my report to the DFT.

340+ of the 347 taxi licensing bodies in the country managed to respond properly to my FOI request, including by internal review if necessary. I don't see why Derby is unable to do so.

Yours sincerely,

Doug Paulley

FOI, Derby City Council

This is acknowledgement that your e-mail has been received by the Freedom
of Information team.  We will respond to you as soon as possible.

 

If you are making a Freedom of Information request you will receive a
response within the statutory 20 working day timescale.

 

Freedom of Information Team | Governance & Assurance | Resources
Directorate| Derby City Council, The Council House, Corporation Street,
Derby DE1 2FS | Telephone 01332 640763 | Minicom 01332 640666 | Web:
[1]www.derby.gov.uk

Proud of Derby

 

 

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[2]derby.gov.uk/news

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FOI, Derby City Council

Dear Doug,

 

I apologise for the delay in you receiving the internal review decision,
we are working on this though and we will try and get a decision to you by
the end of this week at the latest.

 

Kind Regards

 

Tom

 

Tom Mullen| Legal Officer | Legal Services | Organisation and Governance
Directorate | Derby City Council |The Council House | Corporation St,
Derby, DE1 2FS | 01332 643617 Minicom 640666 | [1]www.derby.gov.uk

show quoted sections

FOI, Derby City Council

Dear Doug,

Following your request for an internal review of the response provided to you in relation to your freedom of information request I have now looked into this and acknowledge that some of the questions in your original request were not answered, namely the following:

3) If you do not have a S167 list or lists now, please indicate if you still intend to produce such a list.
4.A) Please indicate when you intend to have the list in place.
4.B) Where you have already made relevant decisions, please indicate whether you intend to comply with the elements of the statutory guidance set out in 2.B. to 2.F. above.

Please find our answers to these questions below:

Question 3 - Answer: Yes

Question 4.A) The deadline for the s. 167 List to be in place is 31 March 2019.

Question 4.B) Yes

Apologies that these answers were not provided to you as part of your initial request and that the internal review was not sent to you by the 9th January as originally stated.

Kind Regards

Tom

Tom Mullen| Legal Officer | Legal Services | Organisation and Governance Directorate | Derby City Council |The Council House | Corporation St, Derby, DE1 2FS | 01332 643617 Minicom 640666 | www.derby.gov.uk

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