Uber considers concessions to save London licence

25 September, 2017, 00:27 | Author: Celia Hoffman
  • Uber self-driving car

"But that required a dialogue we have not been able to have", said Tom Elvidge, Uber's General Manager in London.

The agency said the factors it considered included Uber's "approach to reporting serious criminal offenses" and its use of software created to evade the authorities.

In a shockingly honest response to Uber losing its license in London, new chief executive Dara Khosrowshahi told employees of the ride-hailing app that "there is a high cost to a bad reputation", as he urged the company to "learn how to be a better partner to every city we operate in". More than 5,15,000 people had signed in support of Uber.

More than half a million people signed an online petition in less than 24 hours by Saturday afternoon backing Uber's fight to save its auto operations in London, mirroring profound economic and political disagreements in Britain.

Uber now faces a showdown with London's Mayor Sadiq Khan, who this month said he wouldn't let his teenage daughters use cabs like Uber on their own over fears for their safety. He further tweeted an appeal to people of London to "work with us" in solving the issue.

Any talks will centre around safety and driver checks, areas cited by TfL for deeming Uber not "fit and proper" for permission to operate.

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Fred Jones responded by saying Uber had revolutionised the taxi market in London and the rest of the United Kingdom, actually improving safety for passengers and drivers - not harming it. And thousands of Uber drivers in the British capital faced the fear of unemployment.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has also said TfL had raised "serious concerns" about safety, but indicated Uber had the opportunity to "mend its ways".

But he also suggested that Uber might eventually be allowed to continue operating in London.

Uber is likely to come under more fire next week when it appears in court to appeal a verdict that granted two of its drivers rights such as the minimum wage, the latest "gig economy" battle between firms lauding the flexibility enjoyed by self-employed drivers and unions accusing them of exploitation.

The choice, which Uber intends to advance, raises the likelihood that different urban communities could be encouraged to take action against the organization. Saturday night the Save Your Uber in London campaign on the Change.org website had gained almost 600,000 signatures.

"This program denies ride requests to users who are violating our terms of service - whether that's people aiming to physically harm drivers, competitors looking to disrupt our operations, or opponents who collude with officials on secret "stings" meant to entrap drivers", Uber said in a statement.

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