The Supreme Court of Canada just dealt a big blow to Uber
Some movement has finally been made in respect to a $400 million class-action lawsuit that Uber drivers sought to launch against the rideshare company back in 2017.
The Supreme Court of Canada has sided with David Heller, a former Uber Eats worker, who has been trying to secure employee status for those who drive for the app and are currently considered independent contractors, giving them no rights to do things like take labour issues to court.
Excellent news. Let’s regulate all work to that they are protected with all legal rights and minimum standards. And let’s make it easier to join a union if they choose to do so.— Peggy Nash (@peggynash) June 26, 2020
Friday's decision means that drivers can indeed solve such disputes under the Ontario Employment Standards Act in Ontario courts, giving way to define them as actual employees — which could also mean huge change for other members of the gig economy.
Being considered an employee would mean that certain other standards around vacation and overtime pay, minimum wage and more could also be ensured for current contract workers. The class-action suit is asking for damages for anyone who has worked for the app in Ontario since 2012.
In a decision co-written by Justices Rosalie Abella and Malcolm Rowe, the top court said, “the fees impose a brick wall between Mr. Heller and the resolution of any claims he has levelled against Uber,” calling his plight a “Gordian knot" #cdnpoli #SCC— iPolitics (@ipoliticsca) June 26, 2020
Up until now, any Uber or Uber Eats driver who had a workplace-related problem — such as Heller did when with the company changed how he was compensated — had to resolve it through a legal process in the Netherlands (where the company is based) that incurred a cost of nearly $20,000 to drivers, which the Ontario Court of Appeal has previously called an "unconscionable" and "prohibitive" condition.
Join the conversation Load comments