Event

September 17th: Rally For Fair Leasing Prices

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Join us in fighting for fair leasing regulations. Enough is enough! We need fair leasing regulation NOW – we can’t afford to see these prices sky rocket.

We will be having a rally and press conference at city hall on Monday, September 17th! Here’s the schedule for the day:

               8:30AM-9:30: Rally and picket outside city hall gates

               9:30-10:00: Press Conference on the City Hall steps

               10:00AM – on: City Council Hearing on leasing regulations

We need IDG members out in FULL FORCE to show the City Council that fair leasing regulations are long overdue. Join us and show the city council the power we have by coming together.

News

Support Fair Leasing

Earlier this week, New York City drivers achieved a dramatic victory in the passage of new worker-friendly laws. These new rules will ensure fair pay and will slow the over-hiring by Uber and Lyft.

But there is a new fight ahead. The truth is because of taxi influence, the City Council did not listen to our demand for a driver cap, and instead implemented a temporary cap on vehicles. Because of that, we expect huge increases in leasing costs to be already underway.

Join us in calling for City Council to end predatory leasing here.

We have to stand together and demand a seat at the table to fight back. Together, we can show City Council the truth.

Sign the petition to demand fair leasing prices.

If your leasing company attempts to raise the cost of your lease, let us know. Send us screenshots or photos of the cost of your lease. Sign the petition if you want to make sure all drivers are treated fairly.

Press Releases

Drivers Guild Cheers New Law After Two Year Campaign for Livable Wage

Historic Victory for NYC’s Uber/Lyft Drivers Comes on Heels of the Guild Winning Vision and Telemedicine Health Benefits in July

New York, NY — Today, the Independent Drivers Guild joined New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and made brief remarks before he signed historic Uber / Lyft bills into law, including the nation’s first living wage protection for Uber and Lyft drivers. The IDG waged a two year campaign for the pay protections which will give more than 65,000 hard working New York City drivers and their families a desperately needed raise – see the timeline here: https://drivingguild.org/2018/06/29/pay-3/ And IDG’s statement on the bills’ passage here: https://drivingguild.org/2018/08/08/955/

IDG founder Jim Conigliaro, Jr, who has been organizing drivers in this industry since he was sixteen alongside his father with the Machinists Union, told the Mayor and city officials, “Truth is, throughout my time, the City Council and the TLC turned their backs on the black car industry, profiting from its labor while drivers struggled to survive. But this Council, this Mayor and this TLC are changing things.” Conigliaro Jr. also called on the city to stop predatory leasing practices and pass benefit fund legislation to ensure drivers a broader social safety net in addition to the historic vision and health telemedicine benefits the IDG won for drivers this summer through the Black Car Fund.

IDG Member and Uber driver Aziz Bah also spoke, thanking the mayor, the council and the TLC and urging them to always “put the drivers first.”

IDG Fair Pay Campaign: By The Numbers

 

Below is the prepared testimony of Conigliaro, Jr (see video here):

Testimony of Jim Conigliaro Jr., President and Founder

The Independent Drivers Guild

Before Mayor Bill de Blasio

Public Hearing on Introductory Numbers 890-B, 144-B and 838-C

City Hall,  August 14, 2018

Good afternoon, Mayor de Blasio, Council Members, my name is Jim Conigliaro, Jr. and I am speaking today as the founder of the Independent Drivers Guild (IDG), and representative of the Machinists Union (IAM), which the IDG is an affiliate of. We represent and advocate for 65,000 Uber, Lyft, Juno, and Via drivers. Ninety percent of our members are immigrants representing 190 countries and fighting for the American dream. And on behalf of our members, we support this historic package of bills.

I have been organizing black car drivers with my father and the Machinists Union since I was 16. Over the years, we had some success unionizing black car drivers but we were never able to make broader change for all drivers. Never had a voice with the people making the rules.

Truth is, throughout my time, the City Council and the TLC turned their backs on the black car industry, profiting from its labor while drivers struggled to survive. But this Council, this Mayor and this TLC are changing things.

Under the IDG umbrella, and along with all the driver-activists that are here today, the hundreds that turned out during committee meetings, and the over 16,000 drivers that signed the IDG petition demanding a living wage, drivers finally have a voice to make that broad regulatory change. That voice led to the passage of 890-B, requiring the basic protection of a living wage for hard-working drivers and their families who have seen their incomes and quality of life plummet while the app-based companies revenues and profits have soared to record levels.

I want to thank the Mayor and his team — TLC Commissioner Meera Joshi, Jon Paul Lupo and Jeff Lynch; Speaker Corey Johnson and his staff, especially Laura Popa and her team; and Council Members Brad Lander, Steven Levin and their staff for listening to drivers and inviting the IDG to the table on these historic bills.

But we can’t stop here.

It is essential New York City caps leasing costs as soon as possible. App-Based companies will continue nonstop hiring with false promises and this has already led to higher leasing costs.

And while the IDG is successfully expanding the benefits available to drivers through the state’s Black Car Fund, further expansion of the Social Safety Net on the City level is essential.

It’s a new day, but we have a lot of catching up to do in this industry.

Thank you Mr. Mayor, and of course, on behalf of IDG and IAM, I respectfully request that you sign the package of bills before you today.


Media contact: [email protected]

Active

End Predatory Leasing

While we support slowing the number of drivers entering the industry, limiting the number of vehicles on the street will lead to all new drivers being forced to lease, which will skyrocket the costs of leasing and vehicle costs as a whole. That is why the City Council agreed to regulate leasing companies.

While the bill to regulate leasing companies is proposed in City Council, our sources say it was written by the bosses of the industry. We have to demand a voice at the table, and we have to demand fairness. If we let up for one second, these companies will get away with anything they want.

In addition, the data the City Council has available that they are using to regulate leases and our pay is not based on reality. The recent Taxi and Limousine Commission study alleges that monthly vehicle leasing averages $635 per MONTH. We all know that right now, the lowest price you can get for an old Toyota Camry is $350 per WEEK.

We cannot allow leasing companies to exploit the vehicle cap to take advantage of our fellow drivers. We demand a fair limit to leasing prices. Sign this petition to demand a fair limit to leasing prices.

Jobs

TLC Universal License 24-Hour Course Instructor

The Independent Drivers Guild (IDG) Education Center is seeking an experienced TLC-licensed drivers and union activists to join our team as instructors for the TLC Universal License 24-Hour Course. This class is required for licensure as a TLC driver. The IDG Education Center offers this course to ensure that every new TLC driver is set up for success from their first day on the job. We are particularly interested in applicants who are bilingual in Spanish, Chinese (Mandarin), Russian, Urdu, and Bengali.

We will train a successful applicant on the curriculum and teaching techniques.

The Independent Drivers Guild is a union nonprofit affiliate of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW, Machinists Union) and represent 65,000 app-based For-Hire Vehicle workers in New York City.

Responsibilities include but are not limited to:
• Teaching 1-2 courses per month, offered over three 8-hour days, or a sequence of weekday evenings.
• Attending staff meetings and participating in professional development
• Rapidly integrating feedback and new curriculum from classroom observations

Required Qualifications:
• Current TLC-licensed driver
• Minimum six months experience as a labor activist
• Passion for social justice
• Friendly disposition toward students
• Driven to build worker power in the For-Hire Vehicle Industry

Preferred Qualifications
• All of the above and experience as a teacher

This position will report to the Education Programs Director and collaborate with faculty and staff of the IDG Education Center.

Wages and Benefits
• This is a part-time position at up to 60 hours/month.
• Competitive pay.

To apply, email a cover letter and resume or CV to [email protected]

Press Releases

Uber and Lyft Drivers Celebrate Passage of Historic Legislation

Uber and Lyft Drivers Celebrate Passage of Historic Legislation

Two Year Campaign By Drivers Leads NYC to Close Minimum Wage Loophole for More than 65,000 Uber/Lyft Drivers

New York, NY — After a two-year campaign by the Independent Drivers Guild, New York City officials voted Wednesday to pass the nation’s first legislation to close the minimum wage loophole for companies like Uber and Lyft and require a minimum pay rate for app-based drivers. The City Council also passed additional FHV bills up for a vote on Wednesday, including the temporary cap on for-hire vehicles and new data reporting requirements. See photo of IDG members rallying in favor of the bills at City hall today with Council Member Brad Lander.

The Independent Drivers Guild, an affiliate of the Machinists Union, represents and advocates for more than 65,000 professional drivers for apps like Uber, Lyft, Via and Juno in New York City. In the two years since the Independent Drivers Guild first called on the city to establish a pay floor, the Guild has waged a massive, worker-led campaign. See the timeline here. Thousands of drivers came together with the IDG to fight for this legislation, representing a victory for organized labor in a decidedly challenging industry given the lack of rights for workers classified as contractors.

“More than 65,000 working families will be getting a desperately needed raise because of today’s vote. We hope this is the start of a more fair industry not only here in New York City, but all over the world,” said IDG founder Jim Conigliaro, Jr. “We cannot allow the so-called ‘gig economy’ companies to exploit loopholes in the law in order to strip workers of their rights and protections.”

“Workers and New York leaders made history today. It’s not easy taking on Silicon Valley behemoths, but we kept on fighting for what we know is right and today the workers prevailed. We are thankful to the New York City officials who listened to the stories of drivers who are struggling to support their families and stood by us in this fight,” said IDG Executive Director Ryan Price. “In particular, our thanks go out to Speaker Corey Johnson, Council Members Lander and Levin, and everyone at the Taxi and Limousine Commission who has been working with us on this effort for the last two years.”

More than 16,000 drivers signed the IDG’s petition to require a minimum pay rate for apps like Uber and Lyft. To force action, the IDG filed a formal rulemaking petition in March and the city responded in May that it planned to act on pay rules this summer. The IDG used the same regulatory and legislative tactics to require Uber to add a tipping option to the app last year. Just months after the city greenlighted the IDG’s proposed tipping rules, Uber added a tipping option not only for New York City (its biggest market) but for drivers across the U.S.

IDG Fair Pay Campaign: By The Numbers

“Uber and Lyft have had every opportunity to pay drivers fairly, but instead they went out of their way to design new and deceitful ways to slash our pay and take more and more of our hard-earned fares. Meanwhile, they have flooded the streets with more drivers than there is work. It’s cruel to their existing drivers and it is cruel to the new drivers who are going into debt to do a job they wrongly believe will pay off.” said IDG member Hailing “Henry” Chen,  a 26 year old Uber driver who lives in Queens. “The companies are trying to claim they now support fair pay for drivers, but those are lies. They fought this every step of the way. Even after report after report came out showing the apps pay less than minimum wage, the companies denied it and refused to raise our pay. This victory was won by the workers. Only when workers came together to put massive pressure on city officials did they act. ”

In New York City, nearly 90 percent of IDG members drive for apps as their main source of income and nine in ten drivers are immigrants.

See IDG’s memo of support for the bills passed today here.

Media Contact: [email protected] or call Moira Muntz at 703-416-9188

 

Event

City Council Bill Package

Come and support the City Council bills that will be voted on TOMORROW, August 8th!

The City Council will be voting on PAY REGULATION for FHV drivers and a temporary cap on new vehicles entering the industry. The IDG has been pushing for pay regulation since June 2016 and finally, the organizing, protests, and rallies are paying off!

Come out on Wednesday, August 8th at 10AM to show your support for these bills!

Press Releases

Uber and Lyft Drivers Call on City Officials to Pass Historic Legislation

Uber and Lyft Drivers Call on City Officials to Pass Historic Legislation

IDG to City Council: “Be on the right side of history”

Available for interview – contact: [email protected]

New York, NY — After a two-year campaign by the Independent Drivers Guild, New York City officials will vote Wednesday on legislation to close the minimum wage loophole for companies like Uber and Lyft and establish the nation’s first minimum pay rate for app-based drivers. The IDG is calling on City Council to pass the fair pay bill and two other FHV bills up for a vote on Wednesday, including the temporary cap on for-hire vehicles. See IDG’s memo of support here: https://drivingguild.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/2018-bill-package-notes.pdf

The Independent Drivers Guild, an affiliate of the Machinists Union, represents and advocates for more than 65,000 professional drivers for apps like Uber, Lyft, Via and Juno in New York City. Nearly 90 percent of IDG members drive for apps as their main source of income and nine in ten drivers are immigrants. IDG officials and drivers are available for interview, including at City Hall on Wednesday. Contact: [email protected]

“Thousands of working families across the city right now are desperate. Professional drivers are being paid less than minimum wage by apps like Uber and Lyft, while the companies take more and more from each fare. This vote is an opportunity for New York to be on the right side of history and lead the way for a fairer ride-hail industry. City Council must send a clear message to these companies: if you want to operate in our city, you must pay workers fairly,” said Ryan Price, Executive Director of the Independent Drivers Guild. “Drivers have fought long and hard to get this point. Now it’s time for City Council to do its part.”

In the two years since the Independent Drivers Guild first called on the city to establish a pay floor, the Guild has waged a massive, worker-led campaign. See the timeline here. More than 16,000 drivers signed the IDG’s petition to require a minimum pay rate for apps like Uber and Lyft. To force action, the IDG filed a formal rulemaking petition in March and the city responded in May that it planned to act on pay rules this summer. The IDG used the same regulatory tactic to require Uber to add a tipping option to the app last year.

IDG Fair Pay Campaign: By The Numbers:

“Uber is trying to erase driver activism by claiming they now support fair pay for drivers, but make no mistake: they don’t. Even after report after report came out showing the apps pay less than minimum wage, the companies denied it and refused to raise driver pay. The app companies have had every opportunity to pay drivers fairly, but instead they have gone to great lengths to slash pay and increase their own cut of each fare,” added Price. “After the tipping campaign, Uber did the same thing. Uber fought tipping tooth and nail and they only added the tipping option in the app after we won the law requiring it in the company’s biggest market, but they tried to play it off like their own initiative.”

Media Contact: [email protected] or call Moira Muntz at 703-416-9188

Active

Email the City Council to vote yes!

On August 8, the New York City Council will vote on what will be a huge win for IDG members. Now it’s time to cross the finish line. These bills will create a fair pay floor, and stop Uber and all the companies from over-hiring.

Email City Council Speader Corey Johnson and tell him why a pay raise is important to you.

To view how the pay floor will affect your pay, click here. If you have questions about the temporary vehicle cap, click here.

Event

August General Meeting

Come to the next IDG General Meeting to get excited about the City Council Meeting happening on Wednesday, August 8th. Because of all the organizing, protesting, calls, emails, lobby days, and POWER that IDG members showed – we will finally be able to pass laws that make the FHV industry better.

We will be discussing the pay floor and temporary FHV cap expected to be voted on at the City Council meeting on 8/8. Health fund and regulations to curb leasing company exploitation is expected to be proposed at that same meeting.

Please join us at this important meeting to discuss positive regulations that are being voted on next week! We need full support to get these to pass!

Free parking opens up at 7PM and there will be food available.