Increasing taxi fares? Decrease unruly behaviour first!Wednesday, June 16, 2021
I was very disheartened to learn of the pending possible 80 per cent increase in fares to public passenger operators following the application by a few associations. They argue that this move sympathises with gas increases and other hardships exacerbated by the novel coronavirus pandemic.
This must also be seen as the Government's concession of its failure to curb the behaviour of unruly operators, especially taximen, who continue their lawlessness and anarchy on our roads. Over time the behaviour of taximen on our roads has got progressively worse. This is an open secret in Jamaica. Successive governments have either lacked the will or creativity to change the culture of recklessness that the commuting public has grown accustomed to from operators, particularly taximen.
We can only hope that the Government, upon approval of the increase, will also introduce a range of measures and initiatives that will coerce taximen into some semblance of civility on our roads, whether by moral suasion or punitive measures — though we prefer the latter.
We would also love the various associations' aid in this effort with the same level of intensity employed in its effort for an increase.
It's time for a change of behaviour and a change of culture. It is only left up to the imagination how much further the descent to incivility, recklessness, profanity, and dangerous driving will be upon the approval of the increase. May God help us!
John Constantine Henry
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