UK

Uber drivers in London to stage 24-hour strike

Uber are staging a strike on Tuesday over issues including pay and claims that workers are being unfairly dismissed.

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

The union has accused the company of failing to implement a court ruling to pay waiting time, which it says makes up around 40% of an Uber driver’s working time, and claims that large numbers of drivers are being unfairly sacked.

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

The union is also in dispute over the introduction of fixed price fares which it claims has led to reduced driver incomes.

Yaseen Aslam, ADCU president said: “It is shameful that Uber continues to defy the highest court in the land to cheat 70,000 workers out of pay for 40% of their true working time.

“The drivers know they deserve and are legally entitled to much more than Uber is offering.

“This strike is just the beginning and there will be much more unrest until Uber does the right thing and pays drivers all that they are owed, both pension contributions and working time.”

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General secretary James Farrar added: “Uber has continued to intensify its use of junk surveillance tech and algorithmic management control to maximise profits.

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

“Instead of trying to gag unions from exposing the flaws in their tech, Uber should instead guarantee all drivers protection from unfair dismissal and the right to access a proper, human-led appeals process.”

An Uber spokesperson said: “Following the historic trade union recognition deal with 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.”

Uber formally recognised 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 will be treated as workers, earning at least the National Living Wage, with paid-for holiday time. Those eligible will be automatically enrolled into a pension plan.

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