Toronto – May 28, 2021 – Uber has recognized UK trade union GMB, fresh off the UK Supreme Court decision that ruled gig and app-based workers are employees and should be entitled to basic employment rights like a minimum wage, holidays, a pension, and income security.
“We call on Uber to do the right thing here in Canada and recognize the employment status of their drivers and recognize UFCW Canada as their rightful representatives,” says Paul Meinema, UFCW Canada National President. “The drivers were determined in their fight for rights and recognition in the UK and their union stood behind them – a historic victory for not only UK Uber drivers but app-based workers around the world.”
The victory is a monumental notch for app-based workers in their global push to win decent and dignified employment.
“70,000 Uber drivers in the UK have been granted union recognition after correctly assessing the employment landscape and realizing their rights were being undermined as employees,” says Pablo Godoy, UFCW Canada Coordinator of Gig and App-Based Employer Initiatives. “When will the government of Ontario realize this scheme to undermine employment and labour rights by recognizing driver’s employment status in Ontario?”
UFCW Canada is actively organizing Uber limo drivers who service Toronto Pearson International Airport and has a pending application for union certification.
“This is what we wanted from day one, Uber to recognize our union and start a dialogue towards addressing the problems we face,” says Ejaz Butt, Toronto Uber driver and UFCW Canada union member.
Uber has tried addressing the growing concerns about working-conditions by introducing its Flexible Work+ policy. This arrangement is nothing but a cynical ploy to ignore labour rights and is a far cry from collective bargaining.
Since launching the Uber Drivers United campaign in 2019, UFCW has become the leading voice for ride-hailing drivers in Canada, bringing union membership to hundreds of Uber Black drivers in Toronto and spearheading organizing efforts in British Columbia, as well as other parts of the country.
To learn more about the campaign to bring justice and fairness to Uber and other ride hailing drivers, visit UFCW’s Uber Drivers United website.