New York City taxi regulators have been sued by Lyft and Juno over rules establishing a minimum wage for rideshare drivers. The policy, which went into effect on February 1, is expected to see drivers receive at least $17.22 per hour after expenses, if upheld. The wage floor is expected to raise average rideshare driver pay by $9,600 annually. Lyft is arguing that implementation will benefit larger companies—i.e. Uber. Labor organizers who have been fighting to establish the minimum refuted this notion. “The idea that this lawsuit is about anything other than avoiding paying drivers a fair wage is laughable,” said Jim Conigliaro, Jr. Founder of the Independent Drivers Guild. [CNN]
Mayor Muriel Bowser has not yet signed into law the public bathroom access bill passed late last year by the DC City Council. The legislation, which Drive United supports, would create a task force to recommend locations for stand-alone 24/7 public restrooms in Washington, DC. It would also incentivize businesses to open restrooms to the public during hours of operation. According to the Washington Post, the Bowser administration has objected to the “costs of maintaining and cleaning bathrooms.”
Learn more about the bill and why Drive United believes everyone has the right to go by clicking here.
Drivers in the Big Apple can expect a raise at the start of next year. Regulators in New York City last week voted to impose a minimum wage on the rideshare industry, creating the first such rules in the country for companies like Uber and Lyft. Under the new framework, which will take effect at the end of 2018, drivers will be entitled to $17.22 per hour after expenses. According to NYC’s Taxi and Limousine Commission, most rideshare drivers currently make less than $12 per hour. [Washington Post]
Uber and Lyft drivers working late at night and into the early hours of the morning are as familiar with this problem as anyone else in DC: when you need to go, it depends on who and what you know. There is hardly any 24/7 public restroom access in Washington. And when nature calls after bars close for last call, if you don’t know of a nearby gas station or late-night diner, you might be finding yourself holding it for an uncomfortably long period of time. If the owner isn’t particularly friendly, you might find yourself buying something you don’t even want just to relieve yourself.
It doesn’t have to be like this, and fortunately the DC City Council is on the cusp of agreeing. Council members will soon be considering legislation that would improve public restroom access in the nation’s capital. The bill would take the first step toward identifying viable locations for 10 stand-alone public restrooms in DC. It would also offer incentives to create a network of private businesses that open their bathrooms to the public during hours of operation.
There is a simple vision behind the legislation, which has been championed by the People for Fairness Coalition of DC (PFFC): nobody in Washington DC should have to walk more than 10 minutes in commercial areas to safely access a public restroom. We at Drive United back this one hundred percent, and we’re asking rideshare drivers and those who want to support them to sign our petition. Tell the City Council and Mayor Muriel Bowser that we can’t hold it any longer.
Drivers and riders are now able to report claims of sexual misconduct to Uber if they are victimized while using the rideshare service. The company said that it’s collecting complaints on incidents ranging from harassment to sexual assault. Uber representatives say that they want to know about allegations even if they don’t rise to the level of criminality so they can address concerns about behavior. [WUSA]