Layla Moran, Lib Dem MP for Oxford West and Abingdon, has today called on the Government to “take firm steps to support our taxi drivers” including by renewing existing licences as quickly as possible, after hearing from constituents who are unable to renew their licence due to COVID-19.
The call comes as pressure builds on the Government to introduce financial support for the self-employed including taxi drivers. Layla has joined cross-party calls for the Government to introduce a Universal Basic Income, saying “No-one should have to face a choice between isolating to protect their health and putting food on the table for their children.”
Moran has today said that the Government “must provide our local authorities with clear guidance to support” taxi drivers, adding that this must include renewing existing licences quickly, which some councils are already taking steps to do.
In response to two written parliamentary questions yesterday, the Department for Transport told Layla that the Government ‘is aware of concerns raised by the industry over potential delays to the renewal of taxi and private hire vehicle licences and will be looking at this further.’
Lib Dem MPs, together with MPs from Labour, the SNP, Plaid Cymru and the Greens wrote an open letter to the Government yesterday urging the Government to introduce temporary measures to give the self-employed financial help.
Commenting, Layla said:
“The Government needs to take firm steps to support our taxi drivers, and must provide local authorities with clear guidance to support them.
“This should include the renewal of all current licences at what is a time of crisis.
“The self-employed need more support from the Government, which is why I, together with MPs from other parties, have called for urgent financial support for them, including through a Universal Basic Income.
“It’s time the Government took the bold steps needed to support the most vulnerable people in this crisis, and that has to include the self-employed including our taxi drivers.”
- A media release regarding Layla’s call for UBI can be found here: https://www.votelayla.org/press_release_government_must_introduce_universal_basic_income_to_protect_rising_unemployed
- Layla’s written questions to the Government in support of taxi drivers can be found here: https://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-questions-answers/?page=1&max=20&questiontype=AllQuestions&house=commons%2clords&member=4656&keywords=taxi
- The open cross-party letter from MPs supporting the self-employed can be read here: https://www.newstatesman.com/politics/economy/2020/03/cross-party-mps-urge-chancellor-provide-more-support-self-employed