Uber drivers across the UK are staging a 24-hour strike in major cities to protest poor pay and working conditions.

The demonstrations will take place in London, Bristol, Birmingham, Nottingham, Sheffield, Manchester, Leeds and Glasgow today.

The App Drivers and Couriers Union (ADCU) organised the strike over claims workers are being unfairly dismissed while the company failed to implement a court ruling to pay waiting time.

The union has said that waiting time makes up around 40 per cent of an Uber driver's working time.

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Currently, the union is also in dispute over fixed price fares which it claims has led to reduced income for drivers.

The ADCU has asked people to support the strike by not booking the service today.

Uber insisted it is working with unions to improve conditions for drivers.

The union said in a statement: "On September 28, 2021, the ADCU will stage a 24-hour national strike against Uber over poor pay & conditions, unfair dismissals and failure to implement the UK Supreme Court ruling.

"Please support the strike by not booking the service and by making alternative travel arrangements on September 28th.

Phone displays the Uber ride-hailing app
Phone displays the Uber ride-hailing app

"Thank you for your cooperation and we apologise for any inconvenience caused. Please share this message."

Yaseen Aslam, president of ADCU, said: "It is shameful that Uber continues to defy the highest court in the land to cheat 70,000 workers out of pay for 40 per cent of their true working time.

"The drivers know they deserve and are legally entitled to much more than Uber is offering.

"This strike is just the beginning and there will be much more unrest until Uber does the right thing and pays drivers all that they are owed, both pension contributions and working time."

General secretary James Farrar added: "Uber has continued to intensify its use of junk surveillance tech and algorithmic management control to maximise profits.

"The results have been catastrophic, with hundreds of people unfairly dismissed and accused of unspecified 'fraudulent activity'.

"Instead of trying to gag unions from exposing the flaws in their tech, Uber should instead guarantee all drivers protection from unfair dismissal and the right to access a proper, human-led appeals process."

An Uber spokesperson said: "Following the historic trade union recognition deal with GMB, drivers have an even stronger voice within Uber.

"We are working together with our trade union partner to raise standards for drivers through greater transparency and engagement.

"GMB represents drivers in areas such as earnings, deactivations and the implementation of new worker benefits, such as holiday pay and pensions."

It comes after Uber announced in March that 70,000 drivers will be treated as workers, earning at least the National Living Wage, with paid-for holiday time.

Those eligible will also be automatically enrolled into a pension plan.

The Silicon Valley-based company said its drivers in London, one of its most important markets, earn £17 per hour on average and the flexibility to choose if, when and where they work will be retained.

Traditional taxi operators and unions have criticised Uber for undercutting competitors, leading to protests and regulatory and legal challenges which have forced the company to pull out of some markets.

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