Seattle Considers Allowing Uber And Lyft Drivers To Unionize

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So what do you guys think about this whole union rights for Uber and Lyft drivers? Good idea? Bad idea?

On Monday, the Seattle City Council plans to vote on a proposed law to give freelance, on-demand drivers like Mr. Creery the right to collectively negotiate on pay and working conditions, a right historically reserved for regular employees. Mr. Creery and hundreds of fellow drivers in Seattle helped push for the legislation. The hope, he said, is to give drivers more say on how much they should be paid.
 

PantherBlitz

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The powers that be certainly have it out for them. In a world where temps and contractors are routinely given little rights and benefits Uber somehow is a bad guy.
 

elzeus

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Waste of time, these jobs are going away in 4-5 years once automated cars are the norm. The CEO of Uber even said so on one of the late night talk shows.
 

Merc1138

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And then Uber can respond with "ok, go drive for someone else. we'll get another driver at a slightly better rate than what you were making but less than you asked for".
 

ol1bit

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This is just stupid. Uber is not a taxi company. All they really do is link people with independent drivers, and handle the $$$.
 

GotNoRice

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1. Uber only works because it allows for cheaper rides. Union bullshit that will cause increases in the cost of Uber rides is just going to kill the only reason people even care to use it in the first place. Ultimately Uber needs to be cheap in order to overcome the fact that you are getting into random people's cars and basically crossing your fingers in terms of safety.

2. How would a union even work with something like Uber? How would it compel Uber to give drivers more money? How would a Union prevent other Uber drivers from simply filling in the gaps when some try to Unionize? Even if there was some sort of Pro-union legislation passed, Uber already violates many local laws and one more isn't going to change anything.
 

Exavior

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I agree with others, this is stupid. This is about like all the 15-17 year old kids that babysit starting a union, to be like a daycare or child care center. Uber works because of how they operate. I could decide I want to be a driver at nigh during my free time and they are out nothing. If suddenly you turn them into your standard taxi company why not just use a taxi company? There are a few times where people seem to be 100% for putting them self out of a job, this is one of those.
 

UrielDagda

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Corporations get to have legal teams, why shouldn't all workers have the right to unionize? Whether it works out for them, though, is a risk they have to be willing to take.
 

Drawmonster

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Corporations get to have legal teams, why shouldn't all workers have the right to unionize? Whether it works out for them, though, is a risk they have to be willing to take.

Because people are have bought into corporate propaganda and are ignorant about unions. Like your weekends? Thank unions. Like to get unemployment in a bad situation? Thank unions. Like having a minimum wage? Thank unions. That list goes on and on. Employees would have ZERO rights and the conditions here would be like China sweatshops if unions hadn't paved the way for the rights we all take for granted.

But people now are brainwashed into thinking they are horrible, without even understanding the benefits. Have unions fucked up and down shady shit in the past? Hell yeah. But so has ever big corporation.

Take a look at the Koch brothers or check out he Waltons if you want to see people who hate unions and pay for the propaganda that so many believe, and then see how their workers are treated.
 

PR1975

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Here's the part that's being missed: Uber is setting up shop in towns that have established taxi services and oversight. They're thumbing their nose at the establishment because they don't like it. So, instead of developing and innovating a service that's on the same regulatory level... they're just saying "whatevs, that doesn't apply to us". Imagine some guy coming around to you house and offering you cheap electricity, he'll run the wires himself... "cause he ain't got time for all that regulatory bullshit". You'd laugh the guy off of your doorstep.

"Ohhh... but if the workers unionize, we won't be able to avoid calling them independent contractors and pay them whatever".... Disrupt my ass.
 

gxp500

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Oops looks like uber has to add a no-union clause on top of the arbitration clause they added recently.
 

Ocellaris

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Couldn't Uber and Lyft fix this by simply telling one major market to fuck off and shutting down services there? People in other areas will come around quick when they see what they can lose.
 

Wrecked Em

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I don't understand why legislation is required for them to form a union. Isn't it the right of any employees to unionize?
 

PR1975

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Couldn't Uber and Lyft fix this by simply telling one major market to fuck off and shutting down services there? People in other areas will come around quick when they see what they can lose.

Then people will go back to cabs. I'm sure those guys with medallions won't mind.
 

SLee

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I don't understand why legislation is required for them to form a union. Isn't it the right of any employees to unionize?
Currently, Uber drivers are considered contractors (though a class action suit will likely change that in the future) and don't have that right automatically. But a city can pass legislation to enable it.
 

pothb

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Most union seem stupid and pointless, if not when they were form, a bit after they were.
 

Patman

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I agree with others, this is stupid. This is about like all the 15-17 year old kids that babysit starting a union, to be like a daycare or child care center. Uber works because of how they operate. I could decide I want to be a driver at nigh during my free time and they are out nothing. If suddenly you turn them into your standard taxi company why not just use a taxi company? There are a few times where people seem to be 100% for putting them self out of a job, this is one of those.

If Uber was still the same price as a taxi I would defer to Uber. Better cars, nicer drivers, overall improved experience.

The fact that it is cheaper? That just makes it a no brainer. Legislation / Unionization should increase prices. Ideally it would distribute the wealth (yeah, I said it) down to the labor pool more evenly than the once top-heavy taxi companies. If not, Uber can just cease to do business in certain states and let a new union-friendly business model come into play.

Uber has previously had all the power in pressing the rates continiously down, now the labor pool is pushing back. Sorry Uber, it's their labor you need to buy, if only for a few more years.

Don't worry though, they will make a new law to force a 50/50 ratio of manned and unmanned vehicles, or tax the automated vehicles even more. The people just might win in the long run if they can organize and stay organized.
 

nutzo

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Because people are have bought into corporate propaganda and are ignorant about unions. Like your weekends? Thank unions. Like to get unemployment in a bad situation? Thank unions. Like having a minimum wage? Thank unions. That list goes on and on. Employees would have ZERO rights and the conditions here would be like China sweatshops if unions hadn't paved the way for the rights we all take for granted.

But people now are brainwashed into thinking they are horrible, without even understanding the benefits. Have unions fucked up and down shady shit in the past? Hell yeah. But so has ever big corporation.

Your confusing unions of 50-75 years ago with current unions.
Unions may have been needed, and did some good years ago, but most of what they fought for is now built into the law.
Private sector unions have largely faded away because they are no longer needed. They have been replaced buy corrupt public sector unions that elect politicians that promise to boast public workers pay, leading to more union dues. It's a vicious cycle that's bankrupting cities and states.

Employment laws have actually become oppressive to the average working person. Out here in California, if you want to work 10 hour days, 4 days a week, you can't unless the employer pays you overtime. When a law interferes with my right to negotiate a work schedule that I want, there's something wrong with the law.
 

zer0nix

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>if you want to work 10 hour days, 4 days a week, you can't unless the employer pays you overtime.

or you can be salaried.
 

krotch

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>if you want to work 10 hour days, 4 days a week, you can't unless the employer pays you overtime.

or you can be salaried.

There's no win there, cause that's where they'll have you work 10 hour days, 5 days a week for the same salary pay.
 

Mr45

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You don't need an Uber, you don't need a cab
Fuck a bus pass, you got a moped man!
 

alxlwson

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Lol unions...
I'm an industrial electrician (material handling cranes in factories, as factory service) and I see on a daily basis the damage the unions are doing. Three union shops have closed up and moved to Mexico this year because Unskilled Joe the parts stacker was getting paid nearly $30/hr, and had no motivation to anything but the bare minimum.

They can organize all they want, but Uber will not meet their demands.
 

nutzo

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>if you want to work 10 hour days, 4 days a week, you can't unless the employer pays you overtime.

or you can be salaried.

You can also have that work schedule if your union puts it in the contract.
Ok for unions to negotiate , but not for individuals.


They have also cracked down on the "salaried" category. The state has strict definitions on who can be paid by salary, and if some bureaucrat decides your company isn't in compliance, they face massive fines.

The small company I work for used to be a lot more flexible, allowing people to leave early for a dr. appointment or to pick up their kid. You could make it up by working through lunch or coming in early the next day.
However, since the state has started cracking down, the company has been forced to put all hourly employees on a time clock (can't just take their word for what hours they worked). These employees also are not allowed to sit at their desk at lunch time, since they "might" do some work. Some people don't have computers at home, so they would use their office computer to check their email or buy something on line during lunch time. Now they can't. Lots of unhappy hourly office employees who don't under stand why the company had to do this.

Basic liberal philosophy: You are to stupid too manage your own life, and only big government can save you from being exploited.
 

Exavior

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Lol unions...
I'm an industrial electrician (material handling cranes in factories, as factory service) and I see on a daily basis the damage the unions are doing. Three union shops have closed up and moved to Mexico this year because Unskilled Joe the parts stacker was getting paid nearly $30/hr, and had no motivation to anything but the bare minimum.

They can organize all they want, but Uber will not meet their demands.

I have heard of this stuff in other areas. Also seen here were a few construction jobs were up for bids and the union groups were losing most of them to none union outfits. Because as you said unskilled joe get $30/hr to do as little as possible and everyone else gets paid a nice amount, and got all types of benefits. But that also meant they had to charge more to cover these prices. Where the non union shops screwing over their workers, no. They might not have gotten as much paid time off for vacations and had to pay a little more for insurance but they were not being fucked over simply because they were not part of a union. Which seems to be the thought at times of union people. that without a companies employees being in a union they are getting bent over the table and screwed every day.

In some cases unions are ok and might have done some good long ago. But now they can go either way and in some cases be bad and hurt the employees over not being in a union.
 

Sovereign

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I love how it's kosher to hate on unions but corporations are Bastions of Capitalism and Freedom(TM).

Unions and corporations do the same thing: they promote and protect the economic interests of their members. Are there scummy unions? Absolutely! But there are also scummy corporations (like Uber, whose "innovation" is "find a way to avoid all those pesky labor laws"). Newsflash: both look out for the bottom line and number one, trying to get the most for the least. Why did unions come into being in the first place? As a counterweight to corporations.

It's a cultural problem, and while I fully agree there's no "government" solution (regulations are often subverted/twisted/abused) something has to change--people have to, at some point, settle for "enough" rather than constantly chasing $0.01 more. That's why I laugh at the notion that if everyone is just left to pursue their own interests, everything will shake out.
 

GotNoRice

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like Uber, whose "innovation" is "find a way to avoid all those pesky labor laws"

In many places it costs so much to get a taxi medallion (in some cases nearly a million dollars!) that you have to take out a mortgage-style loan just to afford one, and then spend much of your income for the next decade or more paying it off. This is a direct cause of the ridiculous prices most cab drivers charge. I don't consider any of this "pesky labor laws" as it clearly has more to do with cities cashing in on $$$ taxi medallions than anything. Uber's main "innovation" is make a taxi service where prices are dictated by relevant parties rather than a city trying to preserve it's medallion cash cow.
 

Merc1138

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In many places it costs so much to get a taxi medallion (in some cases nearly a million dollars!) that you have to take out a mortgage-style loan just to afford one, and then spend much of your income for the next decade or more paying it off. This is a direct cause of the ridiculous prices most cab drivers charge. I don't consider any of this "pesky labor laws" as it clearly has more to do with cities cashing in on $$$ taxi medallions than anything. Uber's main "innovation" is make a taxi service where prices are dictated by relevant parties rather than a city trying to preserve it's medallion cash cow.
Bingo.

I love how it's kosher to hate on unions but corporations are Bastions of Capitalism and Freedom(TM).

Unions and corporations do the same thing: they promote and protect the economic interests of their members. Are there scummy unions? Absolutely! But there are also scummy corporations (like Uber, whose "innovation" is "find a way to avoid all those pesky labor laws"). Newsflash: both look out for the bottom line and number one, trying to get the most for the least. Why did unions come into being in the first place? As a counterweight to corporations.

It's a cultural problem, and while I fully agree there's no "government" solution (regulations are often subverted/twisted/abused) something has to change--people have to, at some point, settle for "enough" rather than constantly chasing $0.01 more. That's why I laugh at the notion that if everyone is just left to pursue their own interests, everything will shake out.
Except when the unions screw the "corporation"(you know not every business with union employees is some giant faceless corporation, right?) to the point where they're out of business, you end up with a bunch of jobless people. But hey, at least they were in a union.

It gets even more ridiculous in an environment where multiple unions are involved. You can have 3 out of 4 unions perfectly happy with things, but 1 union decides to raise a stink and everyone gets shafted. Yeah, unions had and in some cases still have a purpose. However, many times they only exist for the sake of the union and not even the membership of the union(the workers, which was the entire point).
 

jiggz

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Uber and Lyft are privately own companies. I've never had qualm against Unions in the private sectors. At least the private sector has the option of shutting down or moving their operations somewhere else. Let them drivers have a vote and then unionize as they wish. If Uber and Lyft cannot grant their wishes or requests thereafter, then it is time to move on somewhere else or shut down. For Uber and Lyft that will be easy considering they have very little outlays in their operations. The only losers will actually be the drivers.
 

Merc1138

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At least the private sector has the option of shutting down or moving their operations somewhere else.

Yeah, because it's a win for the workers when the employer shuts down or moves the operation elsewhere... leaving you out of a job. But at least they got a couple pay checks worth of dues in? Then there's the matter of employees who don't want anything to do with a union, in some places it's pretty much impossible to have some careers without union involvement.
 
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Since when does anyone need the Government to authorize forming a Union?

The purest Capitalist activity you can get involved with is a Union .... Labor uniting to negotiate the best price for it's product .... Labor.

Dafuq, bunch of commie bastards. :eek::rolleyes:
 

alxlwson

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Since when does anyone need the Government to authorize forming a Union?

The purest Capitalist activity you can get involved with is a Union .... Labor uniting to negotiate the best price for it's product .... Labor.

Dafuq, bunch of commie bastards. :eek::rolleyes:


Negative...cutting out the middle man (unions) and using my own big damn mouth. Pure profit :D
 

deadrody

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But there are also scummy corporations (like Uber, whose "innovation" is "find a way to avoid all those pesky labor laws"). .
Uh, no. You can try and call it "labor laws" all you want, but what they are really doing is subverting the rent-seeking taxi-cab medallion, government sanctioned monopoly model, not labor laws.
 
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