...free to think freely


23rd June 2023


The report from the BBC that up to 20 local councils either have removed or are in the process of removing Pay and Display parking machines in favour of smartphone apps for paying parking charges exposes the advantage of Diverse Diversity over identity based equality ideas.

Not possessing a smartphone is not a Protected Characteristic, but disadvantaging people for that in service provision is still unfair discrimination under Diverse Diversity because it is discrimination on irrelevant grounds.

A driving licence is not conditional on owning a smartphone. Being able to operate smartphone apps is not a requirement for passing a Driving Test. There is no correlation between mobile phone use of any kind and driving other than the prohibition on using a handheld one while doing so. Therefore smartphone ownership is irrelevant to driving and drivers should not be required to have one. Making an aspect of driving, such as paying road or parking charges, conditional on smartphone use is therefore irrelevant discrimination contrary to the principles of Diverse Diversity.

Another example might be the removal of signposts in Cardiff, making it impossible for unaided drivers unfamiliar with the city to navigate within it. A third is the parking restriction in parts of South Bristol which prohibits parking within an hour either side of the local football team’s fixtures. Since when were drivers required to know the times of sporting events? I must have missed that lesson!

This illustrates the universal protection Diverse Diversity offers every citizen irrespective of membership of any specific group. By outlawing unfair treatment, it prevents both traditional and new injustices alike, and affords everyone equality and protection, not just favoured groups.

Surely, that’s something we should all support.