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Barton secures Commercial Passenger Vehicle reform review

Feb 20, 2019 | Media Releases

 

Eastern Metro MP and Transport Matters Party leader Rod Barton has secured an immediate review of the governments commercial passenger vehicle reforms.

In amendements to a Liberal motion today Mr Barton said the deregulation of the taxi and hire car industry to allow Uber into the market had far reaching economic, environmental and safety consequences.

“We are all in this together now – taxis, hire cars and commercial passenger vehicle licence holders – and despite the bad blood of the past five years we must now work together to fix the problems we now face,” said Mr Barton.

Latest figures from the Commercial Passenger Vehicle Victoria website at the end of January 2019 show there are 50,192 hire cars, 10,876 taxis, and 631 wheelchair accessible vehicles registered in Victoria. There are 15,560 active taxi drivers and 92,479 accredited drivers.

“This represents more than a 750% increase in the number of CPV cars on our roads since deregulation.

“We are already seeing serious congestion issues in the Melbourne CBD area with vehicles hovering around like seagulls looking for a cold chip at the beach,” he said.

“We are already seeing serious congestion issues in the Melbourne CBD area with vehicles hovering around like seagulls looking for a cold chip at the beach,” he said.

Mr Barton said Taxi drivers and our new CPV license holders were all struggling to find work and make a decent living.

“Since the reforms Taxi drivers generally speaking earn below the living wage – as low as $10 an hour. They earn no sick pay, no superannuation, they have no holiday pay and not all get workers compensation entitlements.  There is no award to protect them.”

Safety was another huge problem, with drivers touting at the airport, major events, at city hotels and up and down Collins Street in the city.

“How do you know if you are actually getting into a legitimate vehicle?” he said.

Uber has been stopped by jurisdictions around the world as it refuses to comply with local regulations. The European Union has ruled that Uber is a taxi service and should be treated as such.

Victoria is the only state that has compulsorily revoked taxi and hire car licenses, no other state  or territory in Australia has done this and as far as we can ascertain, nowhere else on the planet has this happened.

Mr Barton said the transition and fairness fund payments to the former industry were just a deposit.

“The former taxi and hire car industry deserve proper compensation. All drivers deserve to work in an industry where they can earn a fair wage with fair benefits for their effort.

“And the public deserve a safe and reliable commercial passenger vehicle network.” he said.

ENDS

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