Decision follows GMB’s legal victory over Uber, forcing company to defend their record on drivers’ employment rights and public safety. Comment from Maria Ludkin, GMB Legal Director.
GMB, the driver’s union, has scored an historic victory for workers’ rights and passenger safety after Transport For London (TfL) today refused to renew Uber’s license to operate in the capital. In October 2016, the Central London Employment Tribunal ruled in GMB’s favour – determining that Uber drivers are not self-employed, but workers entitled to basic workers’ rights including holiday pay, a guaranteed minimum wage and an entitlement to breaks.
On Monday September 18 2017, GMB and global consumer group SumOfUs handed in a 100,000-strong mass petition to City Hall calling on Transport for London (TfL) to force Uber to respect workers’ rights or get out of London. The £51 billion San-Francisco transport giant’s license to operate in London was under review having been granted a four month extension in May 2017 and due to expire on September 30th 2017.
Most Londoners believe that TfL should require Uber to guarantee safeguards such as minimum wage and paid holidays for their drivers, according to a poll of adults in London conducted by YouGov on behalf of SumOfUs. TfL has listened to the GMB and told Uber its license will not be renewed. Maria Ludkin, GMB Legal Director, said: “This historic decision is a victory for GMB’s campaign to ensure drivers are given the rights they are entitled to – and that the public, drivers and passengers are kept safe.
“As a result of sustained pressure from drivers and the public, Uber has suffered yet another defeat – losing its license to operate in London. It’s about time the company faced up to the huge consequences of GMB’s landmark employment tribunal victory – and changed its ways. No company can be behave like it’s above the law, and that includes Uber. No doubt other major cities will be looking at this decision and considering Uber’s future on their own streets.
“GMB will always challenge bogus self-employment and tackling exploitation. This decision vindicates our campaign and should be a wake-up call to a company that has for far too long been in denial.”