It is a sad fact that most disabled people across the UK have experienced difficulties in travelling by taxi at some point.
Therefore, in order to be as proactive as possible, Watford Borough Council appointed a specialist company to test the service provided by local licensed taxis. On Monday 14th September, they will be presenting their findings to the Council's Licensing Committee and proposing ways in which to improve the service.
The aim of this report was to gain an overview of how disabled passengers area treated, in order for the Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Associations, as well as Watford Borough Council to be able to fully support drivers to meet the standard required.
It has also been suggested that a working party of licensed drivers, councillors, Council officers and members of local charity, Disability Watford need to consider what training and resources are required to overhaul the taxi service, and provide disabled residents with information about their rights and what level of service they should expect.
Leigh Hutchings, Chairman of Disability Watford commented: “We have not seen the full report yet but we very much welcome it, as it seems to support what we have said for a long time.
"The issues raised should help reshape the taxi service for the benefit of people with a disability, as well as everyone else. The poor treatment of passengers with a disability by taxi drivers and companies is a major issue nationally and some towns are worse than others. We are pleased that Watford is going to be tackling the problem. We are looking forward to working with Watford Borough Council, the Hackney Association and drivers in order to raise their standards.”