What recent assessment his Department has made of the (a) adequacy of working conditions and (b) level of job security of private hire drivers.
The Government support the proportionate regulation of the sector and will shortly be consulting on guidance to licensing authorities on how they might best achieve that, while maintaining high standards in safety, accessibility and workers’ rights.
During the pandemic, the support available for taxi and private hire drivers around the country was patchy, and many experienced people have been lost to the sector. What assessment has been made of the situation and, in hindsight, what could have been done differently?
I pay tribute to the sector for how it dealt with exceptionally challenging times during the pandemic; the hon. Gentleman is quite right to draw attention to that. These have been unparalleled and difficult times across the entirety of the economy. The key thing is that now we have one of the most open societies in the world because of the success of the vaccine roll-out. I am confident that the sector and the wider economy will bounce back.