Face coverings will remain mandatory on London’s transport network including the Tube and buses after July 19, Sadiq Khan has announced.The mayor of London has asked TfL to keep the rule in place when the national law is lifted.Boris Johnson has confirmed most of the remaining lockdown rules, including the face covering law, in England will end on Monday.While it will no longer be a legal requirement, the government has said people will still “expected” to wear masks in indoor enclosed spaces.But Khan said the prime minister’s decision had “put Londoners, and our city’s recovery, at risk”.“I’ve repeatedly made clear that the simplest and safest option would have been for the government to retain the national requirement for face coverings on public transport,” he said.“This is why, after careful consideration, I have decided to ask TfL to retain the requirement for passengers to wear a face covering on all TfL services when the national regulations change.Khan added: “By keeping face masks mandatory we will give Londoners and visitors the reassurance and confidence to make the most of what our city has to offer, while also protecting our heroic transport workers and those who may be vulnerable and rely on the network to get around our city.”The mayor’s request means masks would remain mandatory on the Tube, buses, trams, the DLR, the Overground and TfL Rail services.The government’s decision to scrap the face mask law has been criticised by Labour as well as many scientists. Keir Starmer, the Labour leader, has said the mask law should remain in place.Graham Medley, the chairman of the Sage modelling subgroup Spi-M, told the BBC on Tuesday mask-wearing is only effective “if everybody does it”.“I understand the government’s reluctance to actually mandate it. On the other hand, if it’s not mandated it probably won’t do any good,” he said.In its most recent advice to ministers, published on Monday, Sage experts said a “very rapid” return by people to pre-pandemic behaviour would put the NHS under pressure.“Maintaining interventions such as more people working from home, the use of masks in crowded indoor spaces, and increasing ventilation, would contribute to transmission reduction and therefore reduce the number of hospitalisations,” the scientists said.In Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon has announced she will go ahead with plans to further ease coronavirus restrictions next week.But she said face masks will likely remain for “some time to come”, as she claimed lifting all restrictions right now “would put all of us at greater risk”Related...Boris Johnson Wins Crunch Vote On Overseas Aid Cuts Despite Tory RebellionFace Mask Advice 'Won’t Do Any Good' Unless It's The Law, Says Sage Scientist
Just what you wanted. A yakking commuter in the next seat.
In a few years’ time London commuters will be able to pay for the chance to connect their devices while travelling on the Underground.
Image: TfL By the end of 2024, passengers on the London Underground will have mobile reception across the entire network of stations and tunnels, London’s mayor Sadiq Khan has announced. Popular stations, including Oxford Circus, Tottenham Court Road, Bank, Euston, and Camden Town will be hooked up by the end of 2022, with coverage expanding in phases over the ensuing months. The announcement comes just over a year after 4G coverage was introduced on the eastern half of the Jubilee line, between Westminster and Canning Town, in March 2020. Transport for London (TfL), the city’s transport authority, says the upcoming infrastructure will support 5G networks as well as 4G, but that it will be up to mobile operators themselves to offer support for the... Continue reading…
Transport for London and London Councils have announced Dott, Lime and Tier Mobility as the winners of its prized e-scooter pilot, confirming last month’s suspicions based on job postings by the companies.  Last year, the government legalized e-scooter rental trials by local authorities, although private e-scooter riding is still illegal. This legislation spurred the launch of […]
Matt Hancock has refused to answer questions about Boris Johnson’s Downing Street flat refurbishment, which is subject to an investigation by the election watchdog.The health secretary twice totally refused to engage with questions on the issue before being challenged on his responses by Mirror deputy political editor Ben Glaze.In response, Hancock suggested the media should only ask questions that the government decides “really matter”, while insisting the Downing Street press conference he was hosting was only about coronavirus.At previous press conferences, ministers have been happy to answer questions on wider issues affecting the government.It came after the Electoral Commission said “there are reasonable grounds to suspect that an offence or offences may have occurred” as it launched a probe into the refurbishment of the prime minister’s flat.No.10 has refused to say whether Johnson sought an initial loan from the Conservative Party to cover a reported £58,000-worth of renovations to his residence in No. 11, which he shares with partner Carrie Symonds and their baby son Wilfred.Political donations have to be declared to ensure there are no questions or concerns over politicians or parties being unduly influenced by those giving them money.Matt Hancock is challenged over not answering difficult questions from journalists The health secretary says "the point of the press conference is the incredibly important progress we're making [on] coronavirus"https://t.co/vQhtrfB0KZpic.twitter.com/S246OSi57l— BBC Politics (@BBCPolitics) April 28, 2021At a Downing Street press briefing, BBC political editor Laura Kuenssberg asked Hancock whether a serving government minister who is found to have broken party funding rules should resign.But the health secretary replied: “I know that the prime minister answered lots of questions about this in the House of Commons earlier and given that this is a coronavirus press conference you won’t be surprised I’m not going to add to the answers the prime minister has already given to very extensive questioning, thanks.”Times Whitehall editor Chris Smyth then asked two questions on Covid before enquiring whether the government was still threatening to abolish the Electoral Commission.Hancock replied: “I think we’ll give the third one [question] a miss.”The health secretary was then challenged over his approach by Glaze.The Mirror journalist said: “As culture secretary, you championed the right of the free press and fourth estate to ask difficult questions.“Yet this evening you haven’t engaged with those questions from Chris or from Laura around Tory sleaze.“Now what’s the point in us being able to ask difficult questions if you’re not going to engage with them?”Hancock replied: “The point of the press conference is the incredibly important progress that we’re making about coronavirus, which is without doubt the most important thing facing the country.“And if you’ve listened to the answers, I’m sure you have... you will have one of the most illuminating descriptions of where we are up to scientifically, and operationally and clinically that is available, and I’m very, very grateful to the incredible capability of people who support me as a minister.“It is important there are questions and there were endless questions in the House of Commons earlier on some of the issues that you’ve raised, and you will have seen the appointment of [new independent adviser on ministerial interests] Lord Geidt earlier.“But you’ve also got to concentrate on the big things that really matter.”Earlier this month, Boris Johnson was accused of breaking ministerial rules when he used a televised briefing on the Covid pandemic to launch an “unprompted political attack” on London mayor Sadiq Khan about the Transport for London budget. Related...Election Watchdog To Investigate Boris Johnson's Downing Street Flat RefurbBoris Johnson Can't Be Expected To 'Live In A Skip', Says Sarah VineBoris Johnson Dodges Questions About Who Initially Paid To Refurbish His Flat
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Sadiq Khan would be wasting his time if he sets up a review to look at decriminalising cannabis if he is re-elected as London mayor, Downing Street has said.Boris Johnson’s press secretary Allegra Stratton said the prime minister has “absolutely no intention of legalising cannabis”, insisting “illicit drugs destroy lives”.Khan has promised to set up an independent commission to examine the health, economic and criminal justice benefits of decriminalising the class B drug.The review would likely look at evidence from Portugal, several US states, Canada and Uruguay, where cannabis is effectively legal for recreational use.The London mayor has said it is “time for fresh ideas to reduce the harms [that] drugs and drug-related crimes cause to individuals, families and communities”.NEW: It’s time for fresh ideas to reduce the harms drugs & drug-related crimes cause to individuals, families & communities.If re-elected, I'll establish a London Drugs Commission - independent experts to examine the latest evidence from around the world.https://t.co/3G8FRiYiTq— Sadiq Khan (@SadiqKhan) April 5, 2021Khan said: “The illegal drugs trade causes huge damage to our society – driving serious and violent crime, damaging people’s health and criminalising too many young people.“That’s why, if I’m re-elected, I will establish a new London drugs commission comprised of independent experts to examine the latest evidence from around the world.“The commission will make recommendations focusing on the most effective laws to tackle crime, protect Londoners’ health and reduce the huge damage that illegal drugs, including cannabis, cause to our communities and society.”But Stratton told reporters: “Policy on controlled drugs is a matter for the UK government and there are no plans to devolve this responsibility.“The prime minister has spoken about this on many occasions – illicit drugs destroy lives and we, he, has absolutely no intention of legalising cannabis, which is a harmful substance.”Asked if Khan would be wasting his time with a review, she replied: “That is correct.“Sadiq Khan, the mayor of London, will know that the policy of controlled drugs is a matter for the UK government.“It’s not a matter for his office.”Stratton meanwhile defended Johnson using Downing Street coronavirus briefings to make political attacks on Khan over Transport for London’s finances, which the mayor has described as “lying”.Politico’s London Playbook on Tuesday reported that the BBC has held talks on how to handle the Covid press conferences if the PM continues to use them to launch political attacks on prime time TV in the legally sensitive period leading up to May’s local elections.The PM lied yet again from £2.6m taxpayer-funded press conference.Covid-19 is the sole cause of TfL’s challenges.Before the pandemic I was fixing his mess at TfL - reducing the deficit by 71% compared to what he left. https://t.co/zks3vJbVb0— Sadiq Khan (@SadiqKhan) April 5, 2021Stratton said: “The prime minister was asked a direct question by a CityAM journalist about what was being done for London during the pandemic and the prime minister was simply answering a direct question.” The press secretary also defended Johnson’s visit to a church which has been widely criticised for its attitudes towards homosexuality.Labour leader Keir Starmer has apologised for visiting the Jesus House for All The Nations church in Brent, north London.Asked if the PM would do the same, Stratton said: “We remember the visit to Jesus House well, because that day it was the site of a pop-up centre for vaccines.“One of the main jobs inside government over the last few weeks and months has been driving up vaccine take-up in communities that are hesitant about taking it, most notably the Black community.“That was the purpose of his visit that day, it was a profitable visit where he was able to meet Black community leaders and work to increase vaccine take-up and deal with vaccine hesitancy.“So it was an incredibly important visit – making sure every aspect of the population feels confident in and takes the vaccine is a top priority for this government and that’s why the prime minister made that visit that day.“Hopefully people don’t need reminding, but in case they do, this is a government that is fully committed to advancing LGBT rights and championing equality.”Related...Keir Starmer Apologises For Visit To Church Opposed To LGBT+ EqualityVaccine Passports Could 'Play A Role' For Pubs, As Boris Johnson Relaxes LockdownA Year Of Keir: Will Starmer Pass The May Elections Test?
This article was originally published by Christopher Carey on Cities Today, the leading news platform on urban mobility and innovation, reaching an international audience of city leaders. For the latest updates follow Cities Today on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTube, or sign up for Cities Today News. Closing roads around schools to traffic at pick-up and drop-off times has cut nitrogen dioxide (NO₂) levels by up to 23%, research published by the London Mayor’s office has revealed. Air quality sensors were installed at 18 primary schools in three London boroughs last September as part of a project funded by the FIA Foundation and Bloomberg Philanthropies,… This story continues at The Next Web
A group of women campaigning for safer streets in Lambeth, the London borough where Sarah Everard disappeared, have said they were “repeatedly ignored” by their local authority. Women from the Lambeth Anti-Harassment Campaign have told HuffPost UK how despite managing to meet with every MP in the borough, Transport for London, the British Transport Police and local policing boards, their requests to meet with councillors from Lambeth Council were ignored until the tragic disappearance of Sarah Everard came to light. The campaign group, which is run by women living in the area and several members of the Women’s Equality party, carried out a survey in 2020 of more than 200 women in London to find out more about residents’ experiences of street harassment. They found that 80% of respondents had experienced street harassment, with 19% saying they had never experienced it but had witnessed it. Everard, who went missing on March 3, was last seen as she walked between a friend’s house in Clapham and her home in Brixton, which is in Lambeth. The group had identified a number of hotspots for harassment through its survey in the borough, including Brixton Market, Brockwell Park, the area surrounding Pop Brixton and construction sites in Vauxhall. In emails seen by HuffPost UK, the group first reached out to councillors in November 2020 to inform them of their findings. Despite asking for a meeting, the group did not hear back. Another email, sent in December to follow up the previous message, was not responded to. After a third email the group finally had a response, though the request for a meeting was ignored and they were instead invited to submit their evidence as part of an upcoming consultation on the council’s Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) strategy. It wasn’t until a fourth email was sent on March 11, a day after it was confirmed that human remains had been found in the search for Sarah Everard, that the group was invited to meet with councillors. Another founding member of the campaign group, who did not want to be named, said: “Street harassment is something a group of us living in the local area have raised several times with councillors just over the last few months only to be repeatedly ignored. “We just wish it didn’t take a tragedy, a terrible event, for them to take this seriously. It shouldn’t have taken that for a meeting to be sorted. “When we were watching the news we were just struck that women had been reporting attacks an incidents because that pretty much marries up with our experiences because all of us have been through instances of harassment in Lambeth.” She described how one woman, after experiencing repeated harassment and intimidation in her local area, had decided to move to a different borough altogether in order to try and escape an “increasingly hostile environment”. Emily Reddon, 29, has lived in the Lambeth area for the past four years. As a keen runner she’s experienced countless instances of harassment, from shouts and whistles as she passes, to being surrounded by groups of men in broad daylight. On one early morning run, she tells HuffPost UK, she experienced four separate instances of street harassment in little more than 25 minutes. She said: “Unfortunately being harassed has become par for the course if you’re a woman running in public, which is obviously not acceptable. “I was running once on a lunch break and as I was coming back to the office there was a group of perhaps five or six quite young men who just ran into the pavement in front of me, surrounded me, and started screaming at me. “I was able to run past them and get away, but when I turned back they were just laughing at me like it was some hilarious joke. What’s crazy was that I just went back to the office, showered, ate lunch at my desk and carried on with my day. “I didn’t even mention it to anyone, because you just kind of think: ‘That’s normal, right?’”Lambeth Council said it had previously engaged with the Women’s Equality Party, particularly around the issue of domestic violence during lockdown, but did not specifically say whether this included the Lambeth Anti-Harassment Campaign. A spokesperson for the authority said: “Street harassment faced by women and girls in our borough, as well as all gender-based violence, are totally unacceptable and issues we take extremely seriously. “This council has consistently prioritised funding for services to tackle violence against women in girls, despite a decade of government funding cuts. “The borough’s violence against women and girls consultation has been co-produced with Lambeth residents with lived experience, and has informed the creation of our new violence against women and girls strategy which will be published later this year. We have engaged with a wide range of stakeholders throughout.“Prior to the Covid-19 lockdowns our Youth Council joined the #itmademefeel campaign which saw young people chalk messages about sexual harassment around Brixton to share their experience, and to send the message that this kind of behaviour by men and boys is unacceptable.“We remain committed to campaigning for the male behaviour change we must see, and working hard to supporting our communities in achieving that.”Related...Opinion: It’s Okay If Women Don’t Want To Share Their TraumaBody Found In Kent Woodland Confirmed As Sarah EverardSarah Everard Vigil: Organisers To Launch Legal Challenge Over Alleged Police U-Turn
Peddling hard to swerve a pavement pile-up of leased 'mobile assets causing obstructions in the public realm' Transport for London is launching a pilot data project to help it keep track of dockless rental bikes and e-bikes in the UK capital, the aim being to avoid a pile-up of two wheelers dumped on the pavement.…
This article was originally published by Christopher Carey on Cities Today, the leading news platform on urban mobility and innovation, reaching an international audience of city leaders. For the latest updates follow Cities Today on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTube, or sign up for Cities Today News. Transport For London (TfL) has refused to grant Indian ride-hailer Ola a new private hire vehicle (PHV) operator’s license for the UK capital due to public safety concerns. The transit operator said the firm identified a number of failings – including that more than 1,000 trips were made by unlicensed drivers – and then delayed… This story continues at The Next Web
This article was originally published by Christopher Carey on Cities Today, the leading news platform on urban mobility and innovation, reaching an international audience of city leaders. For the latest updates follow Cities Today on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTube, or sign up for Cities Today News. Transport For London (TfL) has refused to grant Indian ride-hailer Ola a new private hire vehicle (PHV) operator’s license for the UK capital due to public safety concerns. The transit operator said the firm identified a number of failings – including that more than 1,000 trips were made by unlicensed drivers – and then delayed… This story continues at The Next Web
Softbank-backed firm may yet appeal London transport authority decision Transport for London (TfL) has refused to renew the licence of the Indian ridesharing startup Ola, after the discovery of what it described as "potential public safety consequences".…
This comes after Uber won a legal bid to operate in the capital nearly a year after TfL rejected its application over safety concerns.
The long-running saga of Uber vs Transport for London has been finally decided in favour of the former, meaning Londoner’s access to cheap taxis is secured.
Length of operator's licence or related conditions yet to be determined Uber has won an appeal against Transport for London's decision not to renew the ride-hailing app biz's licence for the English capital, ending a three-year tussle between the pair.…
Uber can continue to operate in London after winning a court case against TfL, which withdrew the taxi app's license for the second time in 2019.
Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Uber has won its appeal after losing its license to operate in London, Bloomberg reports. A judge ruled that the service is “fit and proper” and should be allowed to operate in the capital. The company has been granted a license to operate for 18 months. Uber had been allowed to continue operating in London throughout the appeals process. In his decision, the judge admitted that Uber had made “historical failings.” Last year, London’s transport authority, Transport for London (TfL), cited a “pattern of failures” as its reason for not granting Uber a new license to operate. In particular, Uber was criticized for allowing “unauthorized drivers to upload their photos to other Uber driver accounts,” meaning that unauthorized drivers could... Continue reading…
Where are the search warrants for this? asks ex-Brexit Secretary Conservative backbencher David Davis has vowed to ask questions in Parliament over Uber's seemingly unregulated sharing of data with police and transport regulators as it battled to save its London taxi licence.…