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Cab Driver Could Lose His License After Refusing To Pick Up Wheelchair Bound Passenger | Taxi Rank

Hot! Cab Driver Could Lose His License After Refusing To Pick Up Wheelchair Bound Passenger

Winston Bourne, a taxi driver in Wythenshawe, may lose his license after he refused to accept a passenger in a wheelchair. Brian Gaskell had a stroke last year and is now permanently paralysed. Gaskell and his girlfriend, Vanessa Daley, approached a cab driven by Bourne and fully expected to have no issues as Bourne’s cab is fitted with the requisite special ramps necessary to accommodate a wheelchair bound individual.

Gaskell took down the cab’s details and complained Bourne to the Manchester council. Council officers wrote to the driver, asked him to explain his actions and invited him to an interview which would take place under caution. However, he did not turn up and completely ignored reminder letters. Once Bourne was issued with a court summons, he eventually made himself known but only to claim that a bad back prevented him from accepting the couple.

Manchester magistrate’s court ordered the driver to pay a £15 victim surcharge, £350 costs and was also issued with a fine of £100. In addition, he has to attend a review hearing which could see him be stripped of his license. Gaskell spoke out, saying that he felt degraded and humiliated during the incident. He spoke of the frustration he has felt since having the stroke and admitted that he is wary when it comes to going anywhere publicly in his wheelchair. Gaskell explained that it was raining, he had been shopping with his girlfriend and felt tired. He approached the taxi only to be told he couldn’t be accepted. Gaskell stated that he thought the driver was joking but was soon angry when he realised that Bourne was serious.

According to Nigel Murphy, executive member for the environment in the Manchester city council, all licensed black cabs in the city are designed to be accessible to wheelchair users and all drivers are expected to help passengers whenever necessary. Murphy continued by saying that there was no excuse for Bourne to refuse the passenger in this instance and also urged others who feel discriminated against to contact the council after taking note of the taxi’s registration number.

Source: menmedia.co.uk

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