Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Our Campaign to Protect Full-Time Jobs and bring drivers out of our economic crisis is gaining momentum! There is first-time interest from a number of Council Members, the TLC, and the Council Speaker and Mayor in passing laws and regulations to catch up to the changing industry that has left thousands of drivers working longer for less and facing bankruptcies and evictions. We made a pledge to honor the four driver brothers we lost to suicide in four months to keep up our fight for change. Momentum is building to hear us because we have been organizing. Keep up the Pressure Until Drivers' Interests Are Served!
Make your voices heard TOMORROW on our Demands to Protect Full-time Jobs! Any new regulations must help drivers in crisis and not create more economic burdens for us. We March Only Forward! Not Backwards!
We will be outside 250 Broadway. Please come no later than 10:45am to go through security and start our meetings at 11am with Council Members!
At 11am: Meetings with Council Members start! We have 12 meetings lined up!
At 2pm: DEMONSTRATION ON THE STEPS OF CITY HALL!!!
If you can't come in the morning, please join the demonstration. Our last action was covered by over 25 media outlets. Let the world hear us, see us, feel the power of our movement!
While We Demonstrate, the whole City Council will be holding their general assembly. So All 51 Council Members Will See Us! Be Seen To Be Heard!!!
Bring: ID if you are coming for the morning meetings at 250 Broadway AND Umbrella in case of afternoon rain.
Tomorrow, we will be releasing the full 20+ points proposal for COMPREHENSIVE CHANGE:
FHV Vehicle Cap, Regulated meter as minimum rate of fare so no company can go lower, Raise the current rates (and other ways) for drivers to earn more and start our recovery, Caps on Vehicle Financing, No Cheating Drivers on Upfront Pricing, No More TLC Suspensions or Revocation + Fines, No Congestion Pricing on Drivers' Backs!, and More!
Whether Congestion Pricing or new licensing fees: Make it clear: no new or higher fees on drivers' backs! We Need Real Protections!
Wall Street financed companies have operated in the industry for five years with no regulations. That means drivers have had no protection against the number of vehicles or bottomless fares. No driver wins. Uber starves the Uber driver to starve the taxi driver.
United & Organized, we will win this fight!
Uber spent $10 million to oppose the cap in 2015. Uber and Lyft alone have combined valuation over $100 Billion. This is going to be a hard fight and they will try to divide and conquer. Garages and bases will meanwhile fight for their interests.
Our Drivers' Struggle Has the Momentum!
Tomorrow, we will have the stage!
We Have Power To Fight for Real Change!
No Limiting Our Voice Only to What We Oppose - We Have to Call on What We Want!
We Have To Be Seen To Be Heard!!! See YOU tomorrow!
Below is a copy of our Advisory to the media
MEDIA ADVISORY FOR WEDNESDAY APRIL 25 AT 2PM
NYTWA Members to Announce Comprehensive Proposal to Solve Growing Crisis of Poverty Among Drivers at City Hall Rally
On April 25, NYTWA members will meet with Council members then rally on the steps of City Hall at 2PM to announce a comprehensive policy platform to stop the financial crisis hurting yellow taxi, green cab, black car, livery and app-dispatched drivers
(New York, NY) On Wednesday, April 25 at 2PM, members of the New York Taxi Workers Alliance will rally on the steps of City Hall to announce a comprehensive policy platform to stop the crisis of poverty that has pushed four drivers to suicide in four months. Earlier in the day, drivers will meet with individual Council Members.
"We gave our word to the families of our fallen brothers that we will not forget or relent. This crisis is a result of political failure to regulate Wall Street. We are demanding immediate changes in legislation and Taxi and Limousine Commission rules to protect NYC's professional drivers from all sectors - that includes yellow taxi, green cab, livery, Uber, Lyft, and other black car and app-dispatched drivers," said Bhairavi Desai, NYTWA Executive Director. "Our focus is on protecting full-time work and creating livable incomes. Any changes must be driven by labor standards and the interests of workers not a corporate sector given free reign for five years to enrich themselves from the sweat of drivers and disruption on city streets."
NYTWA members including Uber drivers, yellow taxi drivers, green cab drivers, black car drivers, and livery drivers, and allies will rally at City Hall to announce policy solutions to the growing crisis and to demand immediate action
Steps of City Hall
Wednesday, April 25, 2018 at 2PM
NYTWA members are building on momentum from our March 28 action when hundreds of drivers stood with Gabriel Ochisor, the son of Nicanor Ochisor, a yellow-taxi owner-driver who committed suicide on March 16th.
In the week following our March 28 protest, the
, and the
all publicly acknowledge that it was time to look into capping the number of for-hire vehicles flooding our streets without regulation.
is an important first step. But it's not enough to solve the crisis drivers are facing. Our policy platform is guided by the belief that the current crisis can be solved with appropriate legislative and rule-making action and that we must protect full-time work and livable incomes for ALL professional drivers.
We need to set a minimum fare rate in order to establish a wage floor in the industry - so no company can lower rates on drivers' backs. We need to raise rates so drivers have a chance at recovery after five years of straight loss. And we need to establish labor standards - such as caps on driver expenses to end predatory lending - in this new market which has been unregulated for five years and is setting all drivers off on a race to the bottom.
Four drivers were pushed to suicide in four months. Nicanor Ochisor, a yellow taxi owner-driver, Danilo Corporan Castillo and Alfredo Perez, Bronx livery drivers, and Douglas Schifter, a black car driver - all driven to financial ruin by unregulated Wall Street darlings Uber and Lyft, who in 2016 had more lobbyists than Walmart, Microsoft and Amazon combined. Meanwhile, an
found more than half of all Uber drivers earn below minimum wage. No driver wins this vicious race to the bottom.
, the most recent driver pushed to suicide, was an immigrant worker and a yellow taxi medallion owner-driver, who drove with his wife, an increasing pattern among drivers' families working around the clock without time to rest or recuperate with loved ones, adding to the crushing devastation of poverty. Nicanor lost his life savings and was pushed to financial ruin when New York City broke its promise to professional drivers. Instead of keeping its commitment to yellow cab drivers, who operate in the heavily-regulated medallion industry, the city allowed Uber, Lyft, and their cohorts to flood our streets with vehicles covered by zero regulation. This anti-regulation zealotry came at the expense of professional drivers. Black car, yellow cab, green car and even Uber drivers themselves have been pushed into poverty as drivers see their incomes plummet, competing for fares in streets swamped by100,000 for-hire vehicles and with no relief in sight.
Nicanor's family has started a GoFundMe campaign to pay off his medallion so his wife can retire in peace.