Thursday, October 01, 2009
Today was another protest day for the nations taxi drivers.
They came from the four corners ot Ireland, but all in all it was not well supported.
Many people that I spoke to said that they knew nothing about the strike.
a Driver from Galway told me that a big story is about to break about forged taxis operating in their city. The scale and extent of the fraud took the investigating Garda by surprise he said.
RTE report on the day.
O'Connell St re-opens after taxi protest
watch Thursday, 1 October 2009 20:35
O'Connell Street in Dublin has reopened to traffic after widespread disruption earlier today due to a protest by taxi drivers.
More than one hundred drivers are still parked along O'Connell Street in protest at worsening working conditions.
They say they will continue overnight, or until the Transport Minister Noel Dempsey addresses their concerns, if necessary.
Buses and cars are now passing through the street, but taxi drivers not participating in the action are being prevented from accessing the street.
From lunchtime to 7pm, O'Connell was closed both ways to all vehicles due to the protest.
The taxi drivers are protesting against what they say are worsening conditions in the industry.
The Irish Taxi Council says taxi drivers have travelled from Waterford, Galway and other areas to take part in today's demonstration.
A spokesperson for the Department of Transport said the Taxi Regulator is compiling a report with recommendations on the next steps for the industry. The move follows a recent public consultation.
Socialist Party MEP Joe Higgins joined the protest and called on Minister for Transport Noel Dempsey to meet the drivers' representative.
He said the Minister should, 'accede to the simple and straightforward request of the Irish Taxi Council's president Frank Byrne to meet and discuss the plight faced by drivers trying to earn a basic income'.
Earlier in the day, the Commission for Taxi Regulation has released a statement saying the taxi market is now liberalised and therefore there are no quantitative controls on the number of operators.
It added that the Commission was committed to reform, including raising the overall standards required to get a taxi licence.
Gardaí said that a separate protest about a different issue in Dublin Port was planned for tomorrow and that traffic will be disrupted from around 3.30pm to 6.30pm in and around the port area.
Story from RTÉ News:
One point that they seem to be missing is that taxis operating illegally have a great advantage over the legal ones.
If you have 10 cars at a rank, some will make a living.
Now we have 200 more + illegals all competeing for the same amount of work.
NOW THERE IS A PROBLEM.
saying "the taxi market is now liberalised and therefore there are no quantitative controls on the number of operators"
THIS STATEMENT IS OF NO HELP, WE NEED ACTION AND DIALOGUE.