Uber Drivers Threaten to Strike

Sarang Ahuja’s latest post:An illustration picture shows the logo of car-sharing service app Uber on a smartphone next to the picture of an official German taxi sign

Uber Technologies is an American international transportation network company developed to provide a new elegant way for traveling. The tech-company operates using with a smartphone app, which allows customers with smartphones to submit a trip request, which is then routed to Uber drivers who use their own cars. This simple yet convenient way of travel has grown a vast amount of popularity where its services are now available in 58 countries and 300 cities. Reportedly, Uber is estimated to be worth $50 billion.

A recent article in Los Angeles Times highlighted more problems for the privately owned transportation company, Uber. Within just two years, Uber has endured quite a bit of criticism. During the startup phase, the company encountered problems with other competitors, such as taxis and other driving services, for stealing clients and endangering jobs. While the popularity of the application nullified those claims, other allegations, such as customer safety, specifically women, and driver professionalism had begun to surface. Just a few days ago, Uber is now facing a possible strike where a group of Uber drivers across the country are organizing ongoing strikes unless the on-demand transportation company agrees to increase fares and add tipping options.

The drivers, who have coordinated their strike over Facebook, are proposing to strike in various cities across the United States like Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, and Houston. According to the organizers, the drivers have four main points: they believe that Uber should increase fares by 60% nationwide, Uber should add a tipping option to the Uber application, the ride cancellation fee be raised to $7.00 dollars, and last but not least, that the minimum fare be increased by $7.00 dollars. Many of these requests are based on the driver’s personal expense such as gas and time as well as ratings they can behind the wheel.

Uber spokesperson responded with a statement that they are always open to feedback from their drivers. While this statement is reassuring that they company is hearing the problems, there is still concern that they may also be ignored. Drivers for Uber are considered to be independent contractors. Because of this, the drivers are unable to formally unionize and demand wage or work changes.

While various filed class-action lawsuits have been formalized and submitted, we will just have to see if Uber will change it’s principles that can best benefit both the public and their employees. As of now, only time will tell.

from Sarang Ahuja http://ift.tt/1NSkVQO

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