Uber drivers strike on May 8 before IPO to protest low pay

REDONDO BEACH CA- MARCH 25 Driver and strike organizer Nicole Moore speaks during a one-day strike against Uber and Lyft in front of an Uber office. Over 200 drivers marched with signs and protested a recent 25% deduction in pay for Uber drivers

- Uber and Lyft drivers are planning to strike Wednesday in major metropolitan areas across the country, including the DC region. "We are protesting today demanding that the company pay drivers a decent wage and that government authorities tackle Uber's chronic unlawful behaviour".

The ride-sharing company Lyft surprised investors last night with a quarterly revenue rise of 95 per cent to $776 million in its first report since becoming a public company in March, but concerns remained about whether it would ever make a profit. Qualified drivers in the United States, Uber said in its filing, will get $100 to $10,000 (roughly Rs. 7,000 to Rs. 7,00,000) based on trips taken. Uber is paying more than a million drivers about $300 million in one-time bonuses for instance, and has changed policies such as allowing riders to tip.

Lyft posted revenue of $37.86 from each of its 20.5 million active riders during the first quarter, a 34% increase in revenue and a 46% increase in riders over the same period in 2018.

A person familiar with Uber's discussions with investors said the potential for Uber Eats in particular was resonating with investors.

The New York drivers' demands include greater job security, higher incomes and regulated fare for rides.

"With this strike, we want to deliver a message to the greedy companies who used us to reach their goals", San Francisco Uber driver Omar Alkhameri told Gizmodo.

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Reports by The Verge have announced an oncoming strike organized by Uber and Lyft drivers. "We are calling for community standards that will ensure that Uber and Lyft do not create needless traffic and pollution".

Uber said in a statement: "Drivers are at the heart of our service - we can´t succeed without them - and thousands of people come into work at Uber every day focused on how to make their experience better, on and off the road". A driver in New Delhi showed his Uber app that said he had received an $84 (roughly Rs. 5,800) reward, while another in the city, Arvind Kumar, received $165 (roughly Rs. 11,500).

Along with declining wages and no worker protections, rideshare drivers are complaining about the lack of healthcare and paid time off. They have also devised more complicated formulas for determining what riders pay and what drivers earn. Like some other gig-economy companies, the two have long argued their drivers are independent contractors.

Lawrence Mishel, a distinguished fellow with the institute, found that "after accounting for Uber's commissions and fees and vehicle expenses, and taking into account the cost of a modest package of health insurance and other benefits equivalent to those earned by W-2 workers, Uber drivers earn the equivalent of $9.21 in hourly wages - less than what is earned by 90 percent of all other wage and salary earners".

Lyft is the second-largest ride-hailing service behind Uber - set to make its own stock market debut this week.

"These investors of Lyft are making hundreds of millions and billions in the IPO while millions of drivers are trying to make rent", Sinakhone Keodara, a Lyft driver in L.A. who was recently homeless, told ABC News at the time.

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