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Is the DVLA in breach of Civil Rights


Overseventy
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The DVLA is without doubt a very powerful organisation. As with all such Government organisation it is difficult to contact directly, communicate with and is immune to being challenged about its views.
It has a risk averse approach to conducting its business because, we assume, ‘safety’ must be its upper most consideration in conducting itself.  
When risk aversity is coupled with Government pressure to reduce say, the number of drivers over 70 years old, where ‘prevention is better than cure’ is the mantra that is operating in a closed environment with no contact with the people it is investigating, where ‘group think’ will be endemic, when does the DVLA’s approach produce a situation in which people lose their licence to drive unfairly.


The DVLA has no means of addressing grey areas of consideration fundamentally because it purposefully excludes all outside views or arguments which are pertinent to the person being reviewed. Unlike a court of law, the ‘accused’ is excluded from personally being involved.


The loss of ones driving licence in all cases can be life changing, isolating and catastrophic. In a world in which public transport outside cities is non-existent, the simple acts of travelling to purchase food, carrying the goods home, attending medical appointments becomes a cost prohibitive exercise for anyone living on a pension or any low income. An ever increasing demographic.


As a person reaches the age of 70 years, the DVLA ‘automatically’ removes some categories of vehicle a person can drive without any consideration whether that person is capable of driving those categories or not. Is this not ‘ageism’. On the other hand the Government increases retirement age forcing people to remain in work longer.


It is possible to retain these categories but to do so incurs the applicant spending considerable time and expense. The applicant also has to agree to allow the DVLA to subject them to intrusive and invasive medical test and considers the local GP’s advice, the very medic who knows the applicant, irrelevant to that of their own inhouse doctors’ views. Doctors who know nothing about the applicant at all. This process is, in itself, acting as a deterrent to anyone wishing to challenge the DVLA’s views and to quash any descent.

 
Being free to travel in a modern world is an individual right and in the absence of any public means of travel the default is a motor vehicle.


The question is a simple one: In acting and operating in the way the DVLA does is it in breach of Civil Rights legislation and age discrimination?
 

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Being permitted to drive any motor vehicle is not not a "right." Parliament has decided that it is a privilege which can be removed in a number of different circumstances.

 

2 hours ago, Overseventy said:

The applicant also has to agree to allow the DVLA to subject them to intrusive and invasive medical test

 

Are you suggesting that there should be no medical restrictions placed on drivers?

 

As to your question, I don't know what "civil rights" legislation you are referring to. But as far as age discrimination goes, there is ample evidence to suggest that, in general, as people get older they are more likely to suffer from medical problems which may effect their ability to drive safely. 

 

So it seems reasonable to make more stringent enquiries of that ability than it would to do so on younger people. Remember that, in the main, the system of licencing to drive private vehicles relies on self-certification.

 

All the driver has to do is declare he is medically fit to drive. Only when he declares that he suffers from one of a definitive list of conditions does it possibly go further than that.

Edited by dx100uk
added A few blank lines only..dx
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I'm not suggesting that there should be an absence of any checks on medical conditions or medical testing, on the contrary, it may be a good idea to extend it over a wider age range. What I'm suggesting is that in a risk averse, closeted environment, decisions based just on a review of medical reports alone can be wildly wrong. Without knowing the individual any assessment in this isolated manner can be flawed. Loosing ones licence, as I have said, can be utterly life changing so a balanced view is required not one that is skewed hard against one side or another of the mean distribution curve driven by risk aversion.

There are many who have suffered because of this mistake and correction of if can take years and a considerable amount of money, if one has a considerable amount of money in the first place. 

 

Probably the best person to ask, in my view, is the persons GP. To quote one such GP, 'it doesn't matter what I say, the DVLA are not interested in my view, they simply do their own thing. I have no influence'.

 

The word 'communication' seems not to exist in the DVLA's portfolio. There seems to possess  no comprehension of the deleterious effects of providing no response to reasonable requests for information. There's an air of arrogance about the communication word within the DVLA. In comparison with the private sector, customer care doesn't even register. After all, the DVLA has no customers, just extremely worried anxious people whose lives will be shatter when the curt letter arrives informing them that they can no longer drive with no advice on an appeals procedure.

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If you believe DVLA's process is flawed and in contrast to the GP's view, and the DVLA has introduced a new restriction / removed entitlement unreasonably: have you considered

1) an appeal to DVLA, and if refused,

2) an appeal to the magistrate's Court?

Edited by BazzaS
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