This being councillor downtime, with a blissful let up in the deluge of paper coming through my letterbox, it is an opportunity to catch up with some of the issues on my To Do list.
Back in June your three Northfield councillors did a tour with our excellent Safer Neighbourhood Sergeant (see previous post). As we walked past South Ealing tube he mentioned that one of his issues is cab drivers urinating in the area. Although there is one of those automated public loos opposite the tube station it is very rarely in working order. The real problem though is London Underground. Apparently their rental contract with the minicab company does not allow even fulltime office staff to use the station’s staff loos, let alone the minicab drivers.
This is just wrong. The relevant legislation is the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992. Regulation 20, Sanitary conveniences, states: “Suitable and sufficient sanitary conveniences shall be provided at readily accessible places.” LUL may well say that this is the minicab company’s obligation not LUL’s. In that case it should board up these premises as no business could reasonably be expected to fulfil this obligation without access to the station’s loos. LUL cannot have it both ways, ie income from rental but no obligation to provide loos.
There is no reason why the drivers should not be able to use the loos. TfL licences these people and they judge them safe enough to drive young women home late at night. Surely they are safe enough to be able to use the staff loos at tube stations?
The London Mayor can be PC and inclusive when he is making other people jump through hoops but not when it appears that LUL staff are standing in the way of joined up public transport, reducing public nuisance and providing decent working conditions to minicab drivers.
I have written to Tim O’Toole, Managing Director, London Underground Limited, today to get his response to this issue.