Thousands sign petition after Uber is stripped of its London licence

PUBLISHED: 14:44 22 September 2017 | UPDATED: 14:49 22 September 2017

Transport for London says it has informed Uber that it

Transport for London says it has informed Uber that it "will not be issued with a private hire operator licence". Yui Mok/PA Wire

Transport for London said the cab app has demonstrated a “lack of corporate responsibility”

An online petition launched by Uber urging Sadiq Khan to reverse the decision to strip its London licence has been signed by tens of thousands of people in the space of a few hours.

Save Your Uber in London was set up on the website and urges the public to “defend the livelihoods of 40,000 drivers - and the consumer choice of millions of Londoners”.

It said the app’s customers would be “astounded by the decision”.

The petition added: “By wanting to ban our app from the capital, Transport for London and the Mayor have given in to a small number of people who want to restrict consumer choice.

“If this decision stands, it will put more than 40,000 licensed drivers out of work and deprive millions of Londoners of a convenient and affordable form of transport.

“This decision is affecting the real lives of a huge number of honest and hard-working drivers in London.”

One petitoiner wrote: “I don’t believe black cabs should run London like a cartel. If Uber has problems let’s resolve them not just ban them.”

Another added: “I can go out of a night, and get home quickly, Safe and cheap.

“A service that’s easy to pay for without cash, a service that is the future and shouldn’t be taken away in favour of London Black Cabs, just because the Mayor is concerned about them fading away.”

A spokesperson from TfL said: “TfL considers that Uber’s approach and conduct demonstrate a lack of corporate responsibility in relation to a number of issues which have potential public safety and security implications. These include:

· Its approach to reporting serious criminal offences.

· Its approach to how medical certificates are obtained.

· Its approach to how Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks are obtained.

· Its approach to explaining the use of Greyball in London - software that could be used to block regulatory bodies from gaining full access to the app and prevent officials from undertaking regulatory or law enforcement duties.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said in a statement: “I want London to be at the forefront of innovation and new technology and to be a natural home for exciting new companies that help Londoners by providing a better and more affordable service.

“However, all companies in London must play by the rules and adhere to the high standards we expect - particularly when it comes to the safety of customers.

“Providing an innovative service must not be at the expense of customer safety and security.

“I fully support TfL’s decision - it would be wrong if TfL continued to license Uber if there is any way that this could pose a threat to Londoners’ safety and security.

“Any operator of private hire services in London needs to play by the rules.”

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