Uber drivers launch 24-hour strike

Drivers of giant Uber are staging a strike on Tuesday over issues such as wages and allegations workers are being unfairly sacked.

Members of the Drivers and Couriers Union (ADCU) App will hold protests in London, Bristol, Birmingham, Nottingham, Sheffield, Manchester, Leeds and Glasgow, and urge people not to use the service during the 24-hour walkout.

The union accused the company of failing to implement a court ruling regarding payment for waiting time, which it says accounts for around 40% of an Uber driver’s working time, and claims that a large number of drivers are unfairly dismissed.

Uber insisted it was working with unions to raise standards for drivers.

The union also disagrees with the introduction of fixed tariffs which it says have resulted in reduced income for drivers.

Yaseen Aslam, President of ADCU, said: “It is a shame that Uber continues to challenge the highest court in the country to deprive 70,000 workers of their wages for 40% of their actual working time.

“Drivers know they deserve and are legally entitled to more than what Uber offers.

“This strike is just the start and there will be a lot more unrest until Uber does the right thing and pays the drivers everything they are owed, both pension contributions and the work time.”

Secretary General James Farrar added, “Uber has continued to intensify its use of spam surveillance technology and algorithmic management control to maximize profits.

“The results have been catastrophic, with hundreds of people unfairly dismissed and accused of unspecified ‘fraudulent activity’.

“Instead of trying to prevent unions from exposing flaws in their technology, Uber should instead guarantee all drivers protection against unfair dismissal and the right to access a proper and humane appeal process. “

A spokesperson for Uber said: “Following the historic union recognition deal with GMB, drivers have an even stronger voice within Uber.

“We are working with our union partner to raise standards for drivers through greater transparency and engagement.

“GMB represents drivers in areas such as income, deactivations and the implementation of new benefits for workers, such as paid holidays and pensions. “

Uber officially recognized the GMB earlier this year, saying the union could represent up to 70,000 Uber drivers across the UK.

Uber announced in March that 70,000 drivers would be treated like workers, earning at least the national living wage, with paid time off. Eligible individuals will automatically be enrolled in a pension plan.

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