Tired of the treatment, some Uber drivers have decided to unionize. Drivers for the tech company’s Toronto base announced their plans to work with the United Food and Commercial Workers Canada, or UFCWC, for three reasons.
To implement a standard, $15 per hour minimum wage; basic worker benefits such as sick days, vacation days, and breaks; an end to the Uber app’s user-based rating system. A spokesperson told the Pacific Standard. Since the very beginning, Uber drivers have been considered independent contractors. Which creates a bigger issue because independent contractors are not allowed to unionize. Officials at UFCWC said that many of the drivers will argue that they are not independent contractors, but rather, employees.
The drivers are hoping that Uber’s work standards are brought into closer parity with that of traditional cabs. “These are human rights, and all drivers deserve this basic level of respect,” Ejaz Butt, a local driver, said.
Currently, there are about 90,400 ride-hailing drivers in Canada. The UFCWC has said “hundreds” of drivers have already signed union cards. “Today is the beginning of a process that we’re embarking on. The first step of that process is to call Uber come to the table,” UFCW Canada staffer Pablo Godoy said.