Uber Attempts to Make Peace With Drivers

Company unveils new policies, 24/7 support line
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 26, 2017 11:12 AM CDT
A sign marks a pickup point for the Uber car service at LaGuardia Airport in New York.   (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

(Newser) – Hoping to erase all memory of its recent troubles, Uber has unveiled a host of new policies aimed at better treatment of its drivers—though forgetful riders might not be so thrilled. Among the recent policy changes making headlines is a new rule requiring riders to pay $15 to have an Uber driver return an item accidentally left behind, reports the Verge. The delivery was previously free to the ire of drivers, who will now enjoy other perks. US drivers, for example, are eligible to receive tips, begin getting paid after two minutes of waiting for a rider, and will have bad ratings as a result of unavoidable issues like app glitches erased. Drivers can adjust fares without Uber's say-so, too, reports CNN.

A driver will also no longer be automatically deactivated after three complaints. Instead, a complex formula will take into account ratings, driving history, and other factors, reports NPR. But one of the biggest changes is the creation of a 24/7 support line for drivers, who previously communicated with Uber via text message. "We need to move away from the facelessness of what the company has inadvertently become," a company rep explains. That and other changes as part of Uber's "180 Days of Change" answer many drivers' concerns. Some drivers, however, were hoping they'd also see a change in title from independent contractors to Uber employees, which would give them access to benefits like overtime and health insurance. (Read more Uber stories.)

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