Mandatory disability awareness training for taxi drivers

Consultation on mandatory disability awareness training

The purpose of this consultation is to ask you for your views on whether the Council should make it a condition of licensing for all existing and new drivers and operators to undertake mandatory disability awareness training following changes to the Equality Act 2010.

Currently, there is no requirement or condition requiring any drivers or operators licensed by Runnymede to have any kind of disability awareness training.

Training could include (although this list is not exhaustive) understanding subjects such as

  • what is meant by the term disability
  • the law and legal requirements around disability
  • different types of disability
  • how to load and secure passengers and wheelchairs
  • best practice when interacting with a disabled passenger
  • the regulations about assistance dogs
  • their duty of care responsibilities and best practice protocols

This consultation will be circulated to the local taxi trade, Runnymede Councillors and disability groups as well as day centres and libraries in Runnymede.

The consultation period will be from Tuesday 4 October 2022 until Wednesday 16 November 2022.

The information on the following pages may assist you in understanding the legislative changes before making your views known on the consultation return form.

It is important that we get as many responses as possible through this consultation. The Councils Regulatory Committee will meet again on 4 January 2023 to decide on the matter and your views are a key factor in the decision-making process.

On Tuesday 27 September 2022 the Councils Regulatory Committee met to discuss the changes to the Equality Act 2010 and the new responsibilities placed on taxi driver and private hire operators.

The Councils report can be seen by following the link below

The Taxis and Private Hire Vehicles (Disabled Persons) Act 2022 

On 28 June, the Taxis and Private Hire Vehicles (Disabled Persons) Act 2022 took effect in England, Scotland, and Wales. It amended the Equality Act 2010 to introduce new, and amend existing, duties for local authorities and taxi and private hire vehicle (PHV) drivers and operators alike. The 2022 Act aims to ensure that disabled people can use taxi and PHV services with confidence that they will not be discriminated against.

Prior to 28 June 2022, the legislation only required drivers of designated wheelchair accessible vehicles to comply with the requirements of the Equality Act 2010.

The updated Equality Act 2010 imposes duties on all drivers of taxis or private hire vehicles which have been hired by or for a disabled person or by another person who wishes to be accompanied by a disabled person. From 28th June 2022, all licensed drivers (taxi and PHV) and private hire operators; regardless of whether the vehicle is wheelchair accessible, are subject to duties under the Equality Act.

The information on the following pages shows the Equality Act 2010 requirements from 28 June 2022.