No More Secret Deals: All Meetings With TfL Must Be Minuted: PlusStatement From ITA.

Last week, there was an all trade meeting with TfL commissioner Mike Brown.


First item on the agenda was a short speech from Mike Brown telling the org/union leaders that there would be no discussion on Uber.

At this point the group should have got up en masse and walked out the meeting.

The trade have been having these meetings with the TfL  commissioner for over 5 years...although few and far between with Mike Brown who refused meetings for 8 months last year.

What has been achieved from these secret squirrel, un-minuted,  confidential meetings.... I’ll tell you....  ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.

And the reason the orgs won’t make a fuss is that they’ve all signed a good behaviour clause in order to attend.

So why do they go.... possibly because it makes these expensive no marks feel important. 
TfL have put strings on our org leaders and dangle them around like puppets.

Gone is the militancy, gone is the fire in the belly, gone is the Dunkirk spirit and soon gone will be their memberships.

Rank and file drivers are starting to sit up and realise, their orgs are not fighting for them...they’ve become benign collaborators.

With the emergence of driver led groups such as the Independent Taxi Alliance (ITA), Drivers are waking up to the fact that they are being ripped off by the orgs and their subs (in certain cases) are financing life stiles that rank and file drivers could never aspire to. 

It’s easy when you have employed status, large salaries, luxury company cars, fabulous offices, to say “let’s sit back and see what happens....wait and see... don’t protest”.  And yet, what do the trade as a whole get back for its money, a lanyard, a sticker, and if your lucky...a diary.

One org has formed an enterprise company where it’s written into their constitution they can still get paid even if deselected in an election, or retired.

The political alliances of our Unions will not see them take issue against a labour Mayor. What good is that to our trade?

60% of the trade do not belong to any trade org and to be totally honest, looking at the representation offered, who can blame them.

Of the 40%, most will say, the only reason they subscribe to an org is for legal cover... this can be obtained privately at a considerable saving.

Our trade media are very careful what they say in their respective publications, for fear of upsetting their advertisers. Many drivers never read the trade press for this reason and again, who can blame them. 

Some Good News Though.
I heard last week that one org will not be advertising certain trade apps in any of its future publications... and about time too. This is to be applauded and should be emulated throughout all trade media, published and social. 

For years, our trade under poor leadership, has looked to fight the wrong criminals, the wrong enemy. 

The truth is, we should have been fighting the enemy within. The ones who sold us down the river for a seat at the fold up table. 

Militant groups like the RMT and then the UCG were formed in stark defiance of the old guard United Trade Group (UTG) who had signed up to John Mason’s one-sided engagement policy. 
Yet under the new Mayor, they too signed a hamstringing engagement policy with its good behaviour clause. 

The trade is being led down the wrong valley again by woefully inadequate leadership, like the heroic light brigade at Balaclava, massacred, victims of extreme poor generals.


We lost that battle, but we didn’t lose the war because we then sent in the heavy brigade
That’s what the ITA are offering the trade, a heavy brigade.

Have we learned from history?
Who would have thought ten years ago that today we would be totally outnumbered by one PH company, surrounded like the troops at Rorke’s drift


John ‘the cabby’ Kennedy warned us what was happening, when he was chair of the RMT.
But no one listened and he left the battlefield.

Semtex warned us that men were coming to kill us.
He also warned us about the enemy within.
But no one listened and he too left.

The ITA are now telling us, we don’t need these expensive un-achieving orgs, we’ve got nothing to lose and now is the time for drivers to fight back.

They've got a very good bass section mind, but they got no top tenors for sure.

This time drivers are listening, and starting to take notice. Every protest draws more and more combatants ready to fight for their job.

Our band of brothers gets bigger week by week. 

No surrender, Stronger Together!

This post is dedicated to the memory of Frederick Hitch VC and Hackney Carriage Driver
(29 November 1856 – 6 January 1913) 
Recipient of the Victoria Cross for his actions at the Battle of Rorke's Drift



TAXI LEAKS EXTRA BIT FROM THE ITA:

Everytime TfL and another complicit mayor makes a decision that is unjust and affects our trade, we must make TfL and the mayor pay, and inform the media of wrongdoings. A single protest has no real effect. We cannot sit on our hands and hope bad people do right by us.



If you're asking if Mike Brown rang me at home that night, the answer is no, Rome wasn't built in a day.
Protests are an important 'part' of the process, but don’t think for one minute TfL didn't feel the punch this week.

We will win or die trying. If we die, we'll take some of them with us

• ALL MEETINGS MUST BE MINUTED! 

•  WE ALL MUST KNOW WHAT TFL ARE SAYING, AND WHAT INDIVIDUALS ARE PUTTING THEIR NAME TOO! 

• NO MORE SECRETS FROM DRIVERS! 

•  ALL 23K DRIVERS ARE AFFECTED BY WHAT GOES ON IN THESE MEETINGS. MEMBERS OR NOT, THEY SHOULD BE INFORMED! 

•  NO MORE TFL SECRETS!


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