Get To Know: Jennifer Moon, Principal Advisor, Access and Stakeholder Engagement, COMS, Guide Dogs
Jennifer Moon is a qualified Orientation and Mobility (O&M) Specialist and has worked in the field for almost 30 years teaching people with low vision or blindness how to travel around their communities safely and independently.
Her work with Guide Dogs organisations across Australia, including communities on Queensland’s Cape York Peninsula and Thursday Island, and in outback NSW, has given her fantastic opportunities and experience working with people of all ages and abilities. Her international experience includes extensive work and teaching in the United Kingdom and also Russia (Siberia).
Your one and only Australian industry magazine has had a name change!
DRIVE NOW - Voice of the Australian Commercial Passenger Transport Industry.
For 51 years (from May 1966 - April 2017) our magazine was known as Taxi Talk - Voice of the Victorian Taxi Industry.
Back in May 2017 we rebranded the magazine to be DRIVE A2B in light of the fact that the passenger transport industry is no longer only about taxis. We found that we were reporting on news for taxis, hire cars, limousine services and rideshare entities. However, late 2017, Cabcharge Australia also had a name change — becoming A2B Australia.
COVID-19 has impacted all spheres of society, severely affecting all industries globally and the transportation industry is no exception. Strict lockdowns, restricted travel has led the taxi, hire car and rideshare industry to suffer significant loss in business. With the increased concern around health and safety, drivers across the rideshare, healthcare and taxi industry were hesitant to drive patients and passengers, resulting in reduced capacity and impacting the services. Similarly, passengers also needed to feel safe while travelling in Uber, Ola or any other cab services.
Last month in Italy, Uber Eats and similar food delivery platforms were informed that their couriers were by law employees and not independent workers. They were subsequently fined a 733 million euros for violation of labour safety guidelines. In the past, Uber has endeavoured to strategically eschew the application of existing employment law by relegating their drivers as “gig workers”. They claimed that their drivers were self-employed, private contractors – not workers.
I have been reporting on this industry for over 30 years and it never ceases to amaze me how every State (and Territory) in Australia does things slightly, and sometimes majorly, different from the others.
Just this year alone, the Victorian government has seen fit to grant Uber the right to transport our most vulnerable citizens – those who are MPTP (TSS) cardholders. Victoria is the only Australian State to do this. Moreover, it is the only place in the world where this has been done!
In New South Wales, the NSW Taxi Council has started up a Disability Reference Group where industry stakeholders will come together, discuss and network with the NSW taxi industry and disability sector. This will help foster a more collaborative and consultative relationship with all stakeholders.
All Victorian CPVs (ie taxis, hire cars, limousines, special vehicles, ride share (including Uber, Didi, Shebah, GoCatch, Ola) must be cleaned after each trip (including after personal usage).
You must correctly clean high-touch services in a CPV at the right times. You must also keep a record of every time you clean. If you work with a booking service provider (BSP) or CPV owner, they must take reasonable steps to support you.
When to clean
You must clean all surfaces passengers are likely to touch before every trip.
Uber rival Ola says it still has a future in Australia despite the ride sharing company closing most of its local operations and making most of its local staff redundant.
The company's Australian managing director Simon Smith, who joined the company in 2018, has left the business. Meanwhile, Ola has also closed its local driver offices and cancelled its personal accident insurance program for drivers.
In a message sent to drivers Ola said the local driver offices would be closed "until further notice".