Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Westminster Council: Serving the public

Spotted in Wardour Street @ lunchtime: Some emergency work being done on the watermain. The Thames Water van being booked by a grey ghost.

Westminster's parking is outsourced to NCP, who have revenue targets set by the council, so therefore are extremely ruthless. Check the extract from this New Statesman story:

"......NCP is contractually obliged to deliver so many thousand tickets a year. If it exceeds its target, it receives a cut of the additional income. Poor workers, most of them immigrants, are pushed to hit the target and make the profit. They have to get by on £6.75 an hour. They make extra money not by enforcing the law conscientiously but by issuing more tickets. The privatised wardens, or "parking attendants", as they have been pointlessly renamed, receive a £50 monthly bonus if they issue two tickets on average an hour, which rises to £215 if their hit rate rises to three tickets an hour.

One NCP worker in Westminster told the Standard that: "Wardens feel under massive pressure. Some end up issuing dodgy tickets to meet the targets. One attendant was fired recently for pretending he had fixed loads of tickets to car windscreens. Later dozens of tickets were found in his locker."......."

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