This idea to find “alternative models of service delivery” for the driving test is a certain route to a country full of drivers who passed their test courtesy of a backhander to a private instructor.
Why should we even have to contemplate the prospect of that?
Of course, the current system is in trouble because Tories love to de-fund services they want to privatise, making it easier to soften up public attitudes to the sell-off.
We’re seeing it in the NHS, for example.
There is nothing wrong with either system that getting rid of the Conservatives won’t cure.
Driving tests could be privatised by the Tories under new proposals to reform the motoring services agencies.
Last night the move was attacked by a union leader who warned it could be “disastrous” for learner drivers and road safety.
A strategy paper called “safe, secure, sustainable” … from the Department for Transport states that all car tests are delivered by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency.
It says: ”We are exploring whether other models of service delivery might offer a better service to road user, either as an alternative to the current arrangements or to complement them, including involving the private sector in delivery.”
A driving theory test is £23 and the driving test costs £62 with a higher rate of £75 for evenings, bank holidays and weekends.
Learner drivers are facing delays of more than 10 weeks because of a shortage of examiners.
In March 2010 there were 1,780 driving examiners, but by March 2015, there were 1,490.
Mark Serwortka, general secretary of the civil servants’ PCS union, said: “This is a classic tale of Tory austerity, cutting staff then wondering why there are delays.
“But worse, they then claim things could be better under a private company whose motive would be profit.
“We think this would have disastrous consequences for learners and ultimately for road safety.”
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