The gig is up, fees on funds, and carjackings continue. LegalRideshare breaks it down.
Happy 2024, everyone! A new year dawns as delivery drops off, violence continues, and fees on tips settle in. It’s all here in This Week in Rideshare.
DELIVERY’S GOLDEN AGE IS OVER
Has delivery’s golden age gone rusty? Some workers think so. Business Insider reported:
In 2020, at the height of the pandemic, Juan started delivering groceries through Instacart and takeout orders via Uber Eats in Southern California. The money was good enough that he didn’t need any other job.
Three years later, Juan is still a full-time gig delivery worker. But he’s running out of options to stay that way.
Most of those conversations included a common theme: Working as a delivery driver got a lot harder over the past year. Lots of workers tell me that they got into delivering early in the pandemic when lots of people were willing to pay extra to have groceries, takeout, and other things brought to their door.
But now, things are harder. Just finding orders to deliver can be a challenge. Some services, like Instacart, have also cut base pay for delivering orders. Less than 10% of gig workers make over $2,000 a month, according to research from PayQuicker, a payments company with clients in the gig-work space.
NY WORKERS’ COMP FUND CAN CHARGE FEES ON TIPS
A court ruled in favor of keeping fees on non-cash tips. Reuters explains
A U.S. appeals court on Tuesday said a fund created by the state of New York to compensate black car drivers who are injured on the job did not break the law by imposing a fee on noncash tips given to drivers, nixing an $8.5 million award for a class that could include hundreds of thousands of passengers.
Ira Goldstein, the fund’s executive director, in a statement said the 2nd Circuit ruling makes clear that the fund acted in accordance with state law.
“The Black Car Fund’s nation-leading model provides workers’ compensation and other benefits at no cost to drivers, which gig workers in other states don’t have, by charging passengers a small amount on each trip,” he said.
CHICAGO RIDESHARE DRIVER SHOT DURING CARJACKING
As carjackings continue in Chicago, advocates demand change. CBS 2 reported:
A rideshare driver was in critical condition Thursday after he was shot last night during an attempted carjacking in the Austin community.
As of late Thursday afternoon, the 51-year-old Uber driver was in critical condition at Mount Sinai Hospital after being shot several times in the chest. Rideshare drivers said it was just the latest incident in a recent wave of violence against drivers.
Bryant Greening’s law firm, LegalRideshare, specializes in rideshare cases and agrees that companies have not done enough to strengthen identity requirements for passengers.
“We’re dealing with some of the most innovative companies in the world,” Greening said.
He also thinks rideshare drivers should be offered basic safety training — before they hit the road.
“Perhaps self-defense classes, perhaps what to look out for in a situation; how to react if a passenger or community member is giving you problems,” Greening said.