VANCOUVER – British Columbia – The union fighting on behalf of ride-hailing drivers in British Columbia will enter mediation with Lyft and Uber at the Labour Relations Board in Canada.
“The employment contracts that Uber and Lyft require their drivers to sign violate B.C. labor law and we want to ensure that ride-hailing drivers’ rights are protected,” said Kim Novak, President of UFCW 1518. In particular, she said, the contracts imply that drivers cannot join a union, which is in violation of the B.C. Labour Code.
The union filed its challenge to Uber and Lyft at the Labour Relations Board on November 27 and the board announced the mediation date today. “Ride-hailing drivers are exploited, underpaid, and unsafe in jurisdictions around the world where Uber and Lyft operate. Drivers deserve the minimum protections that are provided to all workers in B.C. That’s why we’re asking the board to classify ride-hailing drivers as employees so they can be covered by provincial labor standards.”
UFCW Canada has also been advocating for ride-hailing drivers, signing up hundreds of Uber Black drivers in Toronto last summer.
“I’m pleased that the Labour Relations Board agrees this is an important issue that needs their attention,” President Novak added. “Gig economy workers like ride-hailing drivers need the protection of labor laws and the support of unions, more so because their work is so precarious. UFCW 1518 will continue to be a leader in the fight for fairness for drivers and in setting the standard for gig economy workers in British Columbia.”
UFCW Local 1518 represents 24,000 members working in the community health, service and hospitality, retail, industrial, and professional sectors across B.C.