13 January 2022, 13:05 | Updated: January 13, 2022, 1:07 p.m.
Sadiq Khan has rejected an ambulance driver’s requests to scrap the congestion charge for emergency services in London.
Dave, an ambulance driver from Deptford, said he had been trying to contact the mayor on the subject for five years in hopes of an exception.
He said: “We are there to do a service for London, yet we have to pay for the privilege of getting in.
“For some employees, it’s a lot of money, and it’s rising.
“I appreciate that some employers let you claim that as an expense, public money is being spent on something that doesn’t have to be – it can be used better.”
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Khan said changes were already underway for the congestion charge in February.
He said: “What we simply can not do – and I simply can not afford it, and neither can TfL – is to grant dispensation to anyone working in a key London job.
“From February, we will change the times of the congestion charge. And you will see many more people like you being exempted from paying it.”
The changes mean that there will be no fees in the evening after noon. 18:00, and the opening hours on weekends and holidays will be reduced to kl. 12.00-18.00. However, the current charge of £ 15 remains in place.
Dave claimed that he worked in shifts and therefore would not benefit as much as the mayor had suggested.
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When Dave was asked to explain why relief workers deserved the exemption and not others, Dave said, “Last year, people were outside clapping their hands and saying thank you to me.
“Still, I want to go and ask everyone ‘do you think I should pay the congestion charge to go and do the work I do? I just helped your mother. I just helped your father.” And I guarantee they will say no. ”
He added: “It’s a lot of money, especially on my part of the contingency, which – can you remember the percentage pay rise they gave staff this year? It was not great.”