Rotherham Council announces tougher inspection regime for taxi drivers in wake of Jay report

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Tougher rules to regulate taxi drivers are to be introduced in Rotherham in the wake of the Jay Report.

Council bosses are planning to overhaul their licensing policies to include a more stringent application process, a dress code for drivers, and the introduction of a ‘scores on the doors’ system for taxi firms.

It is intended that a similar system to the one used to grade hygiene at restaurants would be introduced, to improve public confidence.

The shake-up comes after the Jay Report revealed the ‘prominent role’ of Rotherham taxi drivers in the abuse of children. It said four drivers have had licences revoked since 2009 in connection to child sexual exploitation.

Dave Richmond, director of housing and neighbourhood services, said a public consultation will be carried out on the plans, with a final draft of the new policy due to go to the council’s licensing board by February.

He said drivers will face additional costs from the changes, while the council expects a fall in licence applications.