Taxi drivers protest new wheelchair service contract
Drivers of wheelchair-accessible taxis in Toronto say they are on strike over an “unfair” cut by the city’s transit commission.
The drivers protested outside city hall on Tuesday over a proposed five-year contract, which offers them a minimum of $2.50 per kilometre including HST.
The previous contract, which expired on Saturday, worked out to about $2.80 per kilometre.
The new minimum “is not workable” according to May Lui, executive director of the iTaxiworkers Association which is representing the drivers, who are employed as subcontractors.
More than 60 drivers gathered at city hall to protest the cut, marching in a circle and holding placards with slogans such as "TTC is stealing HST" and "we are not asking for raise, we want same price."
Wheelchair-accessible service is contracted out by the Toronto Transit Commission to companies including Scarborough City Cab, Royal Taxi, Checker Taxi and Co-op Cabs.
TTC spokesman Brad Ross said the dispute is between the drivers and the companies, not with the TTC.
The TTC went through a public request for proposals that led to the new contract, Ross said, adding that the cab companies can choose to pay the drivers more than what is stipulated by the TTC.