Uber Displeased: Petition to Save App in London Nears 1 Million Signatures

Ouster of Uber from London not justified says US commerce Secretary

The Uber licence was revoked by the TfL, headed by Khan, a leading figure in the opposition Labor Party, who said on Friday that "all private-hire operators in London need to play by the rules".

Possibly Transport for London and Sadiq Khan thought there was an easy propaganda hit to be had at the "gig economy" by removing Uber's licence. The license is going to expire at the end of this month so unless TfL reverses its decision, Uber cars will be off the road in London next month.

"Uber's approach and conduct demonstrated a lack of corporate responsibility which could have potential public safety and security implications", the Tfl had said. "But that requires a dialogue we sadly haven't been able to have recently", Uber London general manager Tom Elvidge told the Sunday Times. Elvidge said Friday, "We intend to immediately challenge this in the courts". Losing the permit to work in London introduces a noteworthy test for Uber's new CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi, who supplanted its founder, Travis Kalanick, in August. He announced he was stepping down from his role with the ride-sharing giant on June 20, 2017. Uber's London permit will now lapse on September 30.

The taxi app has also been forced to quit several countries, including Denmark and Hungary, and faced regulatory battles in multiple USA states and around the world.

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The petition opposing the announcement says that 40,000 drivers would be put out of work, while millions of Londoners would be deprived of "a convenient and affordable form of transport". The decision in their favour was thought to open up the possibility of claims from all of its 40,000 drivers in the United Kingdom, who are now not entitled to holiday pay, pensions or other workers' rights.

While Uber doesn't have that much of a choice if it wants to return to such an important market (TfL has the upper hand here), it's notable that Uber is changing its tone more quickly than it has in the past. These include Uber's approach to reporting serious criminal offences, its approach to how medical certificates are obtained and its approach to how Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks are obtained. Khan stressed that while he would like for London to cement its position as the global capital of digital technology, all companies must keep within the rules and maintain the high standards that are expected. The city's black-cab drivers - who spend years learning the city streets to pass the famed "Knowledge" test - objected to the interlopers who undercut their business.

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