Uber drivers to join protest for $15 minimum wage

Uber drivers in the U.K. won a landmark court case Friday that means they will qualify for the minimum wage, paid time off and other perks.

NEW YORK — Those working with the leading on-demand company have a demand of their own: a fair minimum wage.

Uber drivers are planning to take to the streets on Tuesday as part of a broader protest calling for a $15 hourly minimum wage.

“Hundreds” of drivers will protest alongside fast food workers, airport employees and home care aides for what is being billed as a “Day of Disruption,” according to Fight for 15, the group organizing the effort.

In San Francisco, Uber’s hometown, drivers are planning to march at the airport with signs that say, “Your Uber Driver is Arriving Striking.” In other cities, drivers will idle their cars or march with low wage workers from other sectors.

“Everyone says the gig economy is the future of work, but if we want to make that future a bright one, we need to join together like fast-food workers have in the Fight for $15 and demand an economy that works for all,” Justin Berisie, an Uber driver base in Denver, said in a statement.

Reps for Uber did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Uber has previously said drivers in its top 20 U.S. markets make an average of more than $19 per hour, but that doesn’t include “driver-partners’ expenses” like gas, car repairs and insurance.

Drivers in some cities have also complained that Uber’s aggressive fare cuts make it harder to scrape by with those additional costs factored in.

Unlike fast food workers, Uber drivers are considered contractors rather than employees. For that reason, they are not entitled to overtime pay or sick leave.

Fight for 15 has organized protests throughout the country since launching in 2012. New York, California and Washington D.C. have each voted to approve a $15 minimum wage.

The latest “Fight for $15” protest takes place just weeks after Donald Trump’s victory. The president-elect flip-flopped during the campaign on the issue of raising the minimum wage and suggested the decision should fall to the states rather than the federal government.

4 comments

  • GET A REAL JOB

    No one is “forcing” them to take an entry-level job. Quit crying and get an education and a REAL job that pays more if you want more money. Stop expecting hand-outs and stop expecting to feed a family of 4 on an entry-level minimum wage position. Pathetic!

    • Nope

      I agree with you….and I drove in the summer! If they get 15 and hour as an employee….they will make less as any smart driver knows that the money your make is 100% yours if you expense your fuel. Anyone who uses uber or lyft as a full time job should not consider it as a job or ever put it in a resume.

  • Nope

    These people who are protesting do not represent all drivers, for the most part on a light day working for a few hours you make that at least…and if they have any brains they would realize that after expenses (fuel, water, car wash, repairs) you are not being taxed on your income…start an LLC…click a few buttons and you are done in 5 minutes. Uber drivers are independent business owners who make their own hours and UBER or LYFT are your agents. I drove in the summer only as a supplement, I made 15-30-40 and hour but only working a few hours on the weekends and avoiding the festivals….I mean really it’s not a job these people will ruin it for the rest of us. I made 300 dollars my first week only working 16 hours not working l longer then 2-3 hours a day….how about these drivers stop parking in the same area and spread out? This is called lazy, like those who complaining about not making enough money serving coffee at dunkin..that should be motivation to go to school. Uber driving is not a full time job, if of these drivers make it their full time jobs they will have ups and downs….get a real part time job and uber on the side.

  • Bill

    “that doesn’t include “driver-partners’ expenses” like gas, car repairs and insurance.”
    Because drivers wouldn’t need any of those things otherwise?
    Sorry,, that doesn’t pass the laugh test.

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