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Report Examines Business Practices of Ride-Share Services

By Admin

As Reported by Melina Druga for Transportation Today

The Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), a coalition of 33 unions, recently released a report examining the business models of companies like Uber, Lyft, and Via.

The coalition determined the companies undermines public transportation’s goals and exploits workers.

The report found that ride-hailing platforms are not intended to serve everyone equally. One-way trips using Uber and Lyft in Chicago, for example, averaged $15 more than via public transportation.

The ride-hailing industry has added nearly 6 billion miles of driving annually to the country’s nine largest cities, undermining federal investments in improving air quality and reducing road congestion. Between 20 percent and 50 percent of those miles were made without a passenger in the vehicle.

Many ride-hailing drivers earn as little as $3.75 per hour after expenses, whereas bus drivers’ average hourly wages are as high as $40 in some cities. Additionally, ride-hailing drivers are classifying as independent contractors, which means the companies can offer low wages and no benefits while avoiding government regulation and relying on massive subsidies from private capital.

TTD President Larry Willis testified Wednesday about the report at a Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Highways and Transit hearing. Uber, Lyft, and Via declined invitations to speak at the hearing.