April 2023 Newsletter:  Drivers are fighting back across the country!

18 Apr 2023

Uber CEO Says He’s Tried Driving; Has Dara Khosrowshahi Tried Living Off Our Income?

In recent reports, Uber’s CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi, claimed to have gone undercover as an Uber driver to understand the issues drivers face. But if he thinks that driving a couple of times for the platform makes him an expert on the struggles that Uber and Lyft drivers face, he is mistaken. Sure, he may have dealt with rude passengers and cruised around in a fancy Tesla, but he has no idea what it’s really like to try to survive on the meager earnings that drivers make. As reported by CNBC, many drivers earn as little as $5 an hour, leaving us struggling to pay rent and feed our families. It’s time for Khosrowshahi to wake up and take action, starting with raising pay-per-ride rates so that drivers can actually earn a decent living wage. 

Coming Soon: IDG Florida! Drivers Organizing in the Sunshine State

We want to extend our warmest congratulations to all Florida drivers on the upcoming launch of Florida IDG, and for joining the Independent Drivers Guild. This is a major achievement for drivers in Orlando and beyond, improving your fight to win wage increases, benefits, and the right to unionize. Joining IDG provides drivers with a platform to advocate for themselves and their fellow drivers, and offers access to a range of resources, including legal services, insurance, and financial planning. With the launch of Florida IDG, drivers now have a strong voice in advocating for their rights, and a community of support to help them navigate the challenges of working for ride-sharing companies. Once again, congratulations to all Florida drivers for taking this important step forward!

Connecticut IDG Hosts Wellness Program to Help Relieve Stress for Drivers and Their Families

The Connecticut Independent Drivers Guild hosted a Wellness Program this month to provide mental health support to drivers and their families. The event was aimed at helping drivers relieve stress and manage the difficulties of their job. As we all know, being a driver is not an easy task, and it can be stressful for both the driver and their family. The IDG recognized this issue and decided to help out by providing free mental health support to get through difficult days. Programs like this provide drivers and their families with the opportunity to learn new strategies to manage stress and anxiety. The event was a great success. Great work CT IDG!

Illinois Drivers are Fighting for Deactivation Protections: Read the Opinion Piece from our Brother Emilio Ugalde 

We urge everyone to read and share Chicago driver Emilio Ugalde’s opinion piece about Illinois drivers fighting for deactivation protections. Emilio’s story is a powerful reminder of the importance of supporting drivers in their fight for fair treatment by ride-sharing companies. As reported in the Chicago Sun-Times, Emilio, who is disabled, was unfairly deactivated from his driving platform, leaving him without a source of income. This is an all too common experience for drivers, which is why the Independent Drivers Guild is committed to stopping the unfair deactivation of good app drivers throughout the country. 

By sharing Emilio’s story and the article, we can help support Chicago drivers in their efforts to pass protections through the Chicago City Council and get Emilio reinstated. No one deserves to lose their income overnight, and it’s critical that we stand with drivers in their fight for fair treatment.

Drivers Continue to Push Right-to-Union Legislation in MA

The Rideshare Drivers Justice Bill is gaining momentum in Massachusetts, and drivers are making significant progress in their fight for fair wages, better working conditions, and a union for Uber and Lyft drivers. Thanks to our tireless efforts, the bill is racking up more sponsors and lobbying continues at the State House every week. Recently, the Drivers Demand Justice Coalition mailed out a detailed newsletter explaining the actions drivers have taken throughout the month, providing more information about the bill, and highlighting the amazing sponsors and coalition groups backing the bill. Massachusetts drivers are successfully on their way to winning a union for Uber and Lyft drivers, and it’s inspiring to see the progress they are making. We must continue to support Massachusetts IDG’s efforts to secure fair treatment for all rideshare drivers.

Driver Spotlight: Meet Massachusetts IDG Member Bethlehem Tfegaye

Bethlehem Tsegaye has been driving for Uber for 10 years. She is fighting for the Rideshare Driver Justice Bill in Massachusetts with IDG because she says she needs a voice on the job. “I have been protesting in support of this legislation with my fellow drivers for months and have been hoping for a bill like this for years. I usually work 60 to 70 hours a week. It wasn’t always like that. But over the past few years, I’ve had to work longer hours to make the same money I used to make in less time. As a mother with three children, I want to be able to afford to spend time with my family.”

“Driving is my livelihood. It’s my career. But rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft don’t have to provide us with basic workplace protections like workers’ compensation, minimum wage protections, unemployment insurance, and most importantly, the right to a union. And they’re actively trying to silence our voices in Massachusetts and across the country, so we remain unable to organize a union. So I’m going to keep fighting until our bill passes. My family can’t wait.”

Happy Ramadan from the Independent Drivers Guild

To all our Independent Drivers Guild members, we would like to extend our warmest wishes for a happy and blessed Ramadan. This month is a time for self-reflection, prayer, and spending time with loved ones. We appreciate the hard work and dedication you bring to the roads every day, and we hope that this holy month brings you a renewed sense of purpose and strength. This Eid al-Fitr, we also want to wish you a joyful celebration with your families and loved ones. May this time of spiritual renewal and togetherness bring you closer to your faith and your families. Eid Mubarak from the Independent Drivers Guild.

Get support 

New York Office Hours & Weekly Outreach

IDG’s NYC office is bigger and better than ever! Visit us:

New York Independent Drivers Guild

41-09 36th St #3

Queens, NY 11101

Days: Monday – Friday

Time: 10AM – 4PM

Until further notice, IDG weekly outreach will now be on Wednesdays at LaGuardia Airport only.

Queens Outreach

LaGuardia Airport

23rd Avenue and 90th Street, Queens, NY 11371

Wednesdays from 1PM – 5PM 

New Jersey Office Hours

New Jersey Independent Drivers Guild

154 Ridge Road

Lyndhurst, NJ 07071

Day: Thursdays

Time: From 10AM to 2PM

Connecticut Office Hours

Connecticut Independent Drivers Guild

157 Church St

New Haven, CT 06510

Day: Wednesdays

Time: From 10AM to 6PM

Illinois Office Hours

IL Drivers! Have you visited our office yet? Come in and get support!

Illinois Independent Drivers Guild

114 W Higgins Rd

Park Ridge, IL 60068

Monday – Thursday 9:30AM to 7PM

Friday 9:30 AM to 2 PM

Saturday – 11AM to 4 PM

Sunday- Appointment Only 

Massachusetts Office Hours

Caffe Nero

1047 Commonwealth Ave

Boston/Allston

Tuesdays from 11AM – 3PM

Boston Logan Airport

Tuesdays from 3:30PM – 5:30PM

Boston Logan Airport

Every other Wednesday from 11:30AM – 1:30PM

Not in CT, IL, MA, NJ, or NY? Contact us here to speak with organizers about next steps. Reach out today – let’s organize in your state!
You can now read previous editions of the IDG Member Newsletter here!