Your District Council has just completed a series of safeguarding and child sexual exploitation awareness training sessions for taxi drivers it licenses.
Eleven sessions were held at the District Council offices in Matlock between August and the end of October.
Each two-hour session featured presentations, video clips, hand-outs and group discussions, with attendees completing a multiple choice question paper at the end to test their knowledge and understanding of the training.
Provided by the District Council’s Licensing and Community Safety Teams, the training supports a Derbyshire County Council child sexual exploitation awareness campaign launched in April 2018, targeted at the thousands of taxi and bus drivers who operate across the county.
The District Council’s licensing manager Eileen Tierney (pictured above addressing one of the workshops) said:
“The general idea of the training was not to make safeguarding solely the taxi drivers’ responsibility, as it is everyone’s responsibility - but to ensure that the subject is widely understood by them, so that early signs of exploitation of young and vulnerable people can be identified and reported through the appropriate channels.
“In May this year we made the training a mandatory requirement after reviewing our Taxi Licensing Policy. It means all new licensed taxi and private hire vehicle drivers must complete the training within six months of a taxi driver badge being granted.
“We are delighted with a very positive response from the taxi trade in the Dales, with 110 of the 116 licensed drivers having already attended a session. A small number of Passenger Assistants who carry out school contracts for the County Council also attended our sessions.”
Existing drivers have until 30 April 2019 to complete the training and all drivers will be required to renew this training every three years.
All vehicles licensed by the District Council as taxis or private hire vehicles have large stickers on both front doors of the vehicle – these detail the vehicle licence number.
They also have a licence plate fixed to the rear of the vehicle. All of the drivers will be wearing a badge to show they are licensed by the District Council, and a second badge showing the licence number and a photograph of the driver will also be on display inside the vehicle so that it can be viewed by passengers.
Vehicles or drivers that do not have these identification marks, but are posing as taxis should be reported to the District Council by telephone: 01629 761345, or by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Any compliments or complaints about the service provided can also be reported through the same channels.