In an effort to combat gridlock on its streets, New York City introduced new regulations affecting rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft, placing a moratorium on new licensed vehicles and mandating a minimum hourly wage for drivers. The move was met with dismay by the public, who have concerns about increased cost and difficulty in getting around, and with the company execs. From Lyft’s VP of public policy, Joseph Okpaku via CNN:
These sweeping cuts to transportation will bring New Yorkers back to an era of struggling to get a ride, particularly for communities of color and in the outer boroughs.
We will never stop working to ensure New Yorkers have access to reliable and affordable transportation in every borough.
But the drivers and labor advocates cheered:
‘Workers and New York leaders made history today. It’s not easy taking on Silicon Valley behemoths, but we kept on fighting for what we know is right and today the workers prevailed,’ said Ryan Price, the executive director of the Independent Driver’s Guild. The organization represents more than 65,000 app-based drivers.
Since services like Lyft and Uber gained popularity, traditional taxis, already regulated and capped by the city, have protested what they see as unfair competition. Unfortunately for companies like Lyft and Uber, regulations like those imposed in New York are likely to be considered in other cities around the world who have also expressed frustration with rideshare.