As Other Cities Strike for Better Pay, NYC App Drivers Receive 3.5% Raise

By A Correspondent
The app drivers have been pressing for an increase in their minimum fare for a while. (Pakistan Week photo)
In a move that reflects New York City’s commitment to supporting its rideshare drivers, the Taxi & Limousine Commission (TLC) has announced an increase in minimum per trip pay for drivers starting March 1, 2023. The increase, pegged at 3.49%, is designed to keep pace with inflation, ensuring that the city’s 84,000 active rideshare drivers can maintain their livelihoods in the face of rising living costs.

This announcement comes amidst strikes in other major American cities, where drivers have banned airport trips on Valentine’s Day to protest against working conditions. However, in New York City, Mayor Eric Adams and the TLC are doubling down on their support for rideshare drivers, recognizing their crTLCucial role in keeping the city moving.

The decision to tie minimum pay to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) reflects a proactive approach by New York City, making it the first municipality in the United States to mandate minimum pay for rideshare drivers. This groundbreaking policy has since been adopted by other cities across the nation.

For the city’s rideshare drivers, the impact of this increase is significant. On average, a typical 30-minute, 7.5-mile trip will now earn drivers almost a dollar more, providing a tangible boost to their earnings. This adjustment acknowledges the hard work and dedication of rideshare drivers, many of whom were previously earning below minimum wage before the implementation of these protections.

Mayor Eric Adams expressed his support for the city’s rideshare drivers, highlighting their contribution to New York City’s vitality. “New York City drivers are some of the hardest working people on the globe,” he stated. “We are proud that these rules now exist, keeping our city a place where working-class people can live and raise a family.”

Deputy Mayor of Operations Meera Joshi echoed these sentiments, emphasizing the importance of maintaining fair pay that tracks with living costs. “They support us, and we must support them,” Joshi affirmed, underscoring the symbiotic relationship between drivers and passengers.

TLC Commissioner David Do emphasized the necessity of the minimum pay standard in combating the impact of inflation on drivers’ earnings. “The adjustment can mean the difference between falling behind on rent or food due to rising costs and keeping up with the economic times,” Commissioner Do stated. “I’m proud to be part of the agency that first required this and it’s a pleasure to be able to let drivers know that they’ll be getting an increase.”

Bhairavi Desai, Executive Director of the New York Taxi Workers Alliance (NYTWA), commended the efforts of drivers in advocating for fair wages. “An annual CPI adjustment is something every working person should have,” Desai remarked. “New York City’s minimum pay standard is a model for the rest of the country.”

Brendan Sexton, president of the Independent Drivers Guild, emphasized the significance of the minimum pay rates for rideshare drivers. “Our Guild led a years-long campaign for New York to enact the nation’s first minimum pay rates for rideshare drivers,” Sexton noted. “We appreciate Commissioner Do acting promptly to enforce these wage standards.”


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