Uber drivers to strike over pay row

California Court of Appeals orders Uber and Lyft to classify drivers as employeesThe App Drivers and Couriers Union (ADCU) has announced that Uber drivers will stage a 24-hour strike on 28 September (next Tuesday) due to a pay dispute.

Industrial action will take place at Uber’s offices in London, Bristol, Birmingham, Nottingham, Sheffield, Manchester, Leeds and Glasgow and will run from midnight to midnight. All Uber drivers have been asked to not log on to the app during the strike and passengers have been requested to not book the service.

According to ADCU, the latest strike action is due to the business’ failure to implement the Supreme Court ruling and pay waiting time, which makes up around 40% of drivers’ hours, the introduction of fixed price fares and no variable fares, which has led to reduced driver salaries and financial risk, and unfair dismissals.

The union has requested that Uber pays drivers for all of their working hours including waiting time, ends up front pricing, which sees fares increase from £1.25 per mile to £2.00 per mile, reduces its commission take from 25% to 15%, and stops dismissing workers without right of appeal.

Yaseen Aslam, ADCU president, commented that he believes it is “shameful” that Uber continues to defy the Supreme Court to “cheat” 70,000 workers out of pay for 40% of their working time, as drivers know they are legally entitled to more than what is being offered.

Additionally, Uber has introduced a pension scheme for its drivers, who will be auto-enrolled into a scheme where the business will contribute 3% of earnings and they can choose to contribute a minimum of 5% of their salary. Staff can also choose to opt out of the scheme.

“Uber’s offer to set up a cross app common pension scheme just proves that it must also be possible for these companies to apportion and pay driver waiting time between them. This strike is just the beginning and there will be much more unrest until Uber does the right thing and pay drivers all that they are owed, both pension contributions and working time,” Aslam said.

An Uber spokesperson said: “Following the historic trade union recognition deal with the union GMB, drivers have an even stronger voice within Uber. We are working together with our trade union partner to raise standards for drivers through greater transparency and engagement. GMB represents drivers in areas such as earnings, deactivations and the implementation of new worker benefits, such as holiday pay and pensions.”