Uber Drivers Strike In Response To Blocked Wage Increases In New York
Hundreds of Uber drivers protested in New York, outside the headquarters of the billion-dollar company.
The chant “Shame on Uber” could be heard echoing across the 9/11 Memorial Plaza. The striking workers held up signs demanding raises that the company blocked back in December.
New York’s Taxi and Limousine Commission initially approved the wage hike, and it was set to go into effect at the end of 2022. The raises would have put into law that drivers have to be paid a minimum of 27.15 for a 30-minute trip, 7.42% more per minute, and 23.93% more per mile. The increase would have seen a $4 bump from the original rates and a $2.50 bump for current rates.
Workers still had hope that the wage hikes would be saved by New York’s Supreme Court. But Judge Arthur Engoron of the Manhattan Supreme Court blocked the proposed increases. A statement from the driving service called TLC’s hike, “economically unjustifiable.” According to Uber, the order would cost riders far more in cost and lead to a decline in reputation.
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The New York Taxi Workers Alliance has been successful in the past, negotiating debt relief for Taxi drivers. The debts had come from the purchase of the taxi medallions needed to own and operate a taxi in the city.
Another strike took place as a result of the court’s decision, consisting of 100 drivers taking to the Brooklyn Bridge.
Responding to the strike, Uber said in a statement, “Drivers do critical work and deserve to be paid fairly, but rates should be calculated in a way that is transparent, consistent and predictable.”
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