According to a recent survey, rideshare drivers of color often experience a sudden termination. According to NBC News, the apps of two-thirds of Uber and Lyft drivers in California have been disabled. People of color were most negatively impacted by the deactivation, according to a driver’s union named Asian Law Caucus and Rideshare Drivers United. 40% of drivers were informed that the app had received consumer complaints, while 30% of drivers said they had not received a reason for their termination. Asian Law Caucus attorney Winnie Kao said getting dismissed through an app is ludicrous.
“This reality is that now app-based drivers can be fired, not even by a human being, but just by an app,” Kao said. “That you can wake up one day and try to turn on the app to go to work, and you’re just blocked. Hearing the stories from the drivers about that was really troubling and really disturbing.”
In March of last year, James Jordan, an Uber employee in Los Angeles for more than five years, discovered that his account had been permanently disabled. The single father of five was suddenly forced to find a new profession because Uber was his sole source of income.
“I had done more than 27,000 rides,” Jordan told Wired. “Then in one week or 10 days, I got more complaints than I had within those five and a half years.” The LA resident claimed a customer complained that Jordan tried to hit her with his car. Trying to prove his innocence, he offered to send dash cam footage to the company. “But they weren’t interested in that,” he said.
The study was completed by more than 800 drivers from around the state. The majority of respondents, who were immigrants and persons of color, mentioned encountering harassment and assault while driving. Half of the drivers reported they experienced racism, and 43% claimed they have endured sexual harassment while on the job. According to the data, drivers of color were deactivated at a greater rate than drivers of color who are white: 70% of drivers of color were either temporarily or permanently deactivated, compared to 57% of white drivers. – Steve Sijenyi