The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals put implementation of Seattle’s collective bargaining ordinance on hold while the appeal process plays out. This means the ordinance will not go into effect for at least the next several months. We believe the Court made the right decision.
There is a tremendous amount at stake in this case, from the rights and livelihoods of thousands of drivers to the fate of rideshare as a transportation option in Seattle. The Court now has time to hear from all parties and carefully consider the unique questions raised by the City’s action. We remain confident the Court will find the City overreached in its effort to protect taxi companies and help the Teamsters.
"I have a medical condition that limits the amount of time I can be in one place. Sometimes when I leave the house to start driving, I begin to feel terrible only a half hour later and have to go home. That wouldn't fly at a regular job.”
Lynn heard about Uber and realized the flexibility would be perfect for her lifestyle. After she started driving, she learned she wasn’t eligible to vote on whether drivers should join a union because she missed the cutoff date by a week, despite having taken enough trips.
Lynn comes from a long line of union supporters. Her dad never made it past the 8th grade, but was a genius at construction. He was a union member and taught apprenticeship programs. Lynn’s husband, son, and sister are currently in the same union—local 66—and all do commercial HVAC construction. The union is vital to their trade, training people to be responsible and safe at what they do.
When it comes to driving with Uber, Lynn was shocked she could be forced to unionize as an independent business owner. She can’t believe how far it’s gone and that she is being denied a vote. “It’s really frustrating to me that this could all be happening and I don’t get an actual say in how my livelihood goes because I started driving a week too late.”
Chad was working 80 hours a week for minimal pay before driving with Uber. Being a disabled veteran, Chad’s previous job couldn’t accommodate his health needs. He started driving because the flexibility offered him a chance to work on his own schedule without sacrificing his health.
Chad is heavily involved and invested in the driver community, but realized he doesn’t get to vote because he started driving after the October 2016 deadline. He reasoned, “I don’t think it's fair for a driver such as myself who started driving in February. With every company I know that has a union, once you've been an employee for 30 days, you're eligible to vote on union contracts, so I feel that every Uber driver who has been driving for 30 days from the effective deadline should be eligible to vote."
In late 2015, the City of Seattle passed a collective bargaining ordinance that has the potential to give the Teamsters union control over your business and turn Seattle back into a taxi-only town.
The ordinance was pushed into law by the City with minimal input from the local driver community, but it hasn’t yet been implemented due to the April 2017 decision of a federal judge to pause further action until multiple lawsuits challenging the legality of the ordinance are resolved.
Since passing the ordinance, City officials have issued rules that prevent thousands of drivers from being able to vote on a union or any potential collective bargaining agreement. They’ve also refused to put in place common-sense safeguards to protect the privacy of your personal information.
Uber will continue to support the best interests of the driver community on this issue and stand up against any threats to your flexibility and freedom.
The City’s collective bargaining ordinance threatens to give the Teamsters control over your future. Join local drivers, riders, and organizations that are working to protect flexible work opportunities and safe, reliable transportation in our community. Become a part of the Drive Forward movement today.