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  • Writer's pictureJane Longreen

Ride Share App and Taxi Cab drivers protest around the nation.

Two sets of people drive for living. One as taxi cab drivers for company like Augusta Taxi Company located in Augusta, GA, with telephone number 7065131584, the other, as ride share App drivers. One major difference in the way both work is that taxis charge customers while moving or stop on traffic which is not so significant especially when traffic is slow but steady. On the other hand, the other charges surge rates (for times of day or night that have a higher volume of traffic or cars on the road) - especially during rush hours. No matter how it is, they all want to make profit and pay bills for their drivers.

In August of 2020, a California judge ruled that ride hailing companies like Uber must reclassify their drivers from independent contractors to employees. In the months prior to this ruling, California’s Attorney General, Xavier Becerra, alongside the city attorneys of Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Diego pushed for ride hailing companies to classify their drivers as employees due to the AB5 law that went into effect in January of 2020. Fast forward to November of 2020 and the ruling that would make ride hailing services reclassify their drivers to employees was opposed.

The fight to be considered as employees by ride hail drivers would not stop which has led to so many protests including one that was carried out last Friday. Uber and Lyft drivers rallied around end of April near Orlando International Airport demanding higher wages, an end to unfair deactivations, and a union. “For far too long we’ve been working really hard, putting our heart and soul into this industry, making these app companies billions of dollars yet we get chump change at home,” driver Aziz Bah said. The local group was just a part of other planned protests happening around the country.

Florida drivers are trying to launch the Florida Chapter of the Independent Drivers Guild, which represents and advocates for more than 250,000 drivers across the country. Union members hope to negotiate fair pay, app policies, and job protections with Uber and Lyft directly. With gas prices and other expenses on the rise in Florida, drivers say their pay has not kept up, and drivers are struggling to make ends meet.

What are motorists asking?

✓ A decent wage

✓ A fair deactivation system

✓ The right to form a union so you can negotiate fair pay, enforcement policies, and job protections directly with Uber and Lyft.

This says Uber about driver requests -

The company said in written statements that “driver earnings on our platform continue to be high. On average, a driver earns $25 per hour while active on the app in Tampa. Before accepting the ride, all drivers can see fare and destination information for every trip.

Furthermore, they indicated that on average the service rate is 19.2%. Supposedly, an independent study by The Rideshare Guy found that Uber’s average cost-of-service “is 12%.”

They also said Florida drivers have some of the highest insurance prices in the country and that companies like Uber are required by law to cover drivers and passengers up to $1 million. “The cost of this coverage has recently increased in Florida, leading to higher fares for passengers,” they said.

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