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Uber, Lyft Drivers Stage Global Day Of Protest: What You Need To Know

Uber, Lyft Drivers Stage Global Day Of Protest: What You Need To Know

Ahead of Uber's planned initial public offering Friday, many of its drivers are participating in a one-day strike Wednesday to protest unfair wages and conditions.

What Happened

Uber's independent contractors are teaming up with those from rival ride-hailing platform Lyft Inc (NASDAQ: LYFT) in a global protest spanning major cities.

In Los Angeles, Uber lowered its driver compensation from 80 cents per mile to 60 cents per mile on March 11, Rideshare Drivers United said in its L.A. press release.

Shortly after, Lyft removed its multiplier pay structure which allows drivers to earn more than its base rate of 80 cents per mile.

"There's no way we can afford another reduction in rate," Rafik Hanna, President of the Association of Uber Drivers in Montreal, Canada, told local media station CityNews.

"As it is right now, Uber's cut is quite large from every dollar we make for them."

Uber drivers in the U.K. are planning a protest outside of the company's London headquarters. Drivers are demanding a pay increase per mile from 1.25 pounds to 2 pounds, while the local union is calling for a reduction in the commission paid to Uber from 25 percent to 15 percent.

Why It's Important

Lyft said a statement obtained by CNBC that drivers earned a combined $10 billion on its platform and on average drivers earn more than $20 per hour.

Uber also said in a statement obtained by CNBC that its drivers are "at the heart" of its services and it "can't succeed without them." The company said it will "continue working to improve the experience for and with drivers."

What's Next

Wednesday's strike is unlikely to have any impact on the timing of Uber's planned IPO, although it may present a new set of moral or financial challenges for the company to address.

Related Links:

Opinion | The Risks Facing Uber Ahead Of Its IPO

Wedbush Initiates Uber At Outperform, Calls It The 'Amazon Of Transportation'

Photo courtesy of Uber. 


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