Ilkeston cabbies to be trained to spot danger signs of abuse

Taxi drivers are to be trained to spot kids at risk of child sexual exploitation
Taxi drivers are to be trained to spot kids at risk of child sexual exploitation

Erewash Borough Council is set to ensure that all its licensed cabbies have mandatory training to be on the look-out for potential child sexual exploitation.

It is among the final two authorities in the county which does not have mandated training in this area, apart from requiring “knowledge” of the issue.

The authority will now require all currently licensed drivers to take the training before their current permit expires – or they will have it taken away.

There are currently 260 existing licensed drivers in Erewash who will require the training and must complete it before November.

New applicants for hackney or private-hire licenses must complete the training within a year of gaining their permit.

A report written for councillors states: “Despite the council’s proactive approach to safeguarding there is always more that can be done locally and across the county to ensure the profile of safeguarding remains high across the taxi trade.

“Furthermore a review of licensing practices across Derbyshire led by North East and Bolsover District Council has recommended that training should be introduced for all taxi drivers to increase awareness of child sexual exploitation and adult safeguarding issues.

“To date Chesterfield, Derby City, Amber Valley, North East and Bolsover and South Derbyshire have all introduced policies that require existing drivers to complete mandatory safeguarding training before their drivers’ licence is renewed.

“Currently this approach has not been adopted in Erewash although safeguarding is now an integral part of the knowledge test for new driver applications.”

The training would be given out in nine 1.5-hour sessions – three sessions each day.

This would cost the council £675 and is being covered by the authority – it is not planned to charge drivers for the training.

Eddie Bisknell , Local Democracy Reporting Service