Lyft dumps money in MA, drivers want to unionize and a big “NO” for shared rides. LegalRideshare breaks it down.
A hit-and-run caused the death of an Uber passenger. Mercury news reported:
An Uber passenger was killed in a hit-and-run crash Saturday evening near Golden Gate Park, San Francisco police said.
The vehicle that fled the scene — a black Audi SUV — had been reported stolen.
The Audi struck a Honda SUV at 7:34 p.m. at 46th Avenue and Lincoln Way, four blocks from Ocean Beach in the Outer Sunset neighborhood.
The Honda was reportedly being operated as an Uber car. Its passenger, Barry McGrath, 38, of San Francisco, was taken to a hospital, where he died, police said. The driver suffered non-life-threatening injuries.
Lyft goes in big on pushing a new Massachusetts measure. Open Secrets reported:
Rideshare company Lyft has already given a hefty $14 million in support of the Massachusetts measure, in hopes of being able to classify their drivers as independent contractors, which would allow Lyft to not provide drivers certain employee benefits such as health insurance and paid vacation.
The Massachusetts ballot initiative, which would classify app-based drivers as independent contractors and enact labor policies, could appear on the ballot during the state’s Nov. 8 election pending either legislature approval or further signature collection.
Drivers are still fighting for the right to unionize. Gothamist explains:
Dozens of app workers who drive and deliver for companies like Uber, Lyft, GrubHub and Doordash rallied in Foley Square Tuesday afternoon, demanding a living wage, access to bathrooms on the job and the right to form a union.
The newly-formed coalition called Justice For App Workers, includes an estimated 100,000 drivers and delivery workers in the metro area. They are part of a growing sector of the “gig economy” throughout the U.S. who have been agitating for better working conditions and recognition as traditional employees with benefits.
With the possible return of shared rides, drivers have voiced serious concerns. CBS Los Angeles reported:
Lyft drivers gathered to protest the reinstitution of certain ride-sharing policies as the pandemic continues into its third year.
“You have no idea if the person next o you has gotten their shots if they have COVID or if it’s just a cold,” said St. Juste.
Two thousand drivers have filed a complaint with the company to ensure that Lyft does not restart shared rides.
“If they cared about the safety of drivers and passengers they wouldn’t be sending out these messages on the app to bring in shared rides,” said Taj, who was driving for the company since 2017.
Uber is back in the hot seat after “serious questions” popup over transgender drivers’ treatment. LA Times reported:
“Uber tries to talk a good game when it comes to LGBTQ equality, but we have serious questions about whether it is failing transgender drivers,” Feuer said in a statement. “We intend to find out if reported incidents are isolated mistakes or part of a larger pattern that locks some transgender drivers out of rideshare opportunities.”
The Times found that Uber at times permanently banned transgender and nonbinary people from working for the platform by treating their photos and documents as fraudulent and suspending their accounts. Multiple efforts by drivers to address the issues with the company were unsuccessful: Blocked applicants told The Times they spent hours messaging and calling the company’s support desk to no avail.