While testifying before the Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Highways and Transit last week, TTD president Larry Willis highlighted the exploitive business model found in the ride-hailing industry and urged lawmakers to hold companies like Uber, Lyft, and Via accountable.
Larry’s remarks centered around a report released by TTD which found the ride-hailing industry’s relatively affordable and convenient service—hallmark features that have driven the industry’s explosive growth and popularity—come at a substantial price. They are based on an unsustainable business model that exploits workers and undermines the goals of public transportation.
Watch Larry’s full testimony below:
Uber, Lyft, and Via all declined to testify at the hearing despite invitations from the Committee – a move Larry called disappointing but not surprising.
“Failure by Uber and Lyft to testify is indicative of a broader pattern of behavior by the ride-hailing industry to sidestep any oversight or regulation that would provide accountability and ensure the wellbeing of drivers and passengers,” Willis said.
Since these ride-hailing companies couldn’t be bothered to appear before Congress, full Committee Chair Peter DeFazio and Subcommittee Chair Eleanor Holmes Norton are demanding they answer these questions in writing. These Committee leaders want to know why Uber and Lyft are misclassifying their workers as independent contractors, not paying minimum wage, and their plans to compete in the public transit space while circumventing safety and other important standards.