Weekly Round-Up: Uber and Lyft on the Hook for Wage Theft in NYC – Owe Drivers $328M

It’s never a good day for Uber and Lyft when they have to pay money out, but it’s great for the drivers of New York City this time around. They are set to receive $328M from the two companies combined for wage theft.

Join RSG Contributor Paula Lemar as she covers the latest headlines in the rideshare business. This week’s news details how Uber and Lyft owe millions to drivers in NYC and how Hertz is failing in their goal to electrify their fleet.

Plus, stay tuned to read about how DoorDash is communicating with customers who don’t want to tip and for one more dose of Halloween fun!

Let’s dive into each summary and Paula’s take on the news.

Uber and Lyft Agree To Pay Combined $328 Million For Withholding Money From Drivers


Uber and Lyft agreed Thursday to pay a combined $328 million for withholding money from drivers.

Uber agreed to pay $290 million and Lyft $38 million in what New York Attorney General Letitia James called the largest wage-theft settlement her office has ever secured.

The money will be distributed to cheated drivers, who will get back pay along with mandatory paid sick leave and other benefits. Eligible drivers can file a claim to receive the money owed.

The “historic” agreement “builds on the benefits and protections that drivers already enjoy through the state’s Black Car Fund,” Lyft said in a statement.

The agreement amounted to a “win” for drivers, Jeremy Bird, the company’s chief policy officer, said.

My Take

When the drivers earn back money from the platforms, it’s always a win, in my book. Uber and Lyft constantly seem like they dodge the rules and even laws that are set across the nation, hoping they won’t get caught. But when they do, it’s a good day for drivers everywhere.

Shout out to the people who track their earnings and keep Uber and Lyft accountable. They are the true heroes.

If you’re a driver in New York, once you receive your money from the settlement, share your experience with us here at RSG!

Check out our video on YouTube for coverage on this news!

Hertz Decides To Slow Down Its EV Expansion


In 2021, Hertz announced that it would order 100,000 electric vehicles from Tesla by the end of 2022. It turns out that the car rental company is far from reaching that number, and it may take a while because it’s slowing down its plans to electrify its fleet.

During the company’s third-quarter earnings call (PDF), CEO Stephen Scherr said Hertz’s “in-fleeting of EVs will be slower than [its] prior expectations.”

Hertz fails at making EV goal
Hertz fails at making EV goal.

Hertz reported a 13 percent margin for the quarter, which Scherr said would’ve been “several points higher” if not for the cost challenges associated with EVs.

One of the factors that affected the company’s margins was depreciation, compounded by the one-third drop in retail prices of the electric cars in its fleet. Tesla had implemented several price cuts over the past year, slashing the Model S and X prices by nearly 20 percent in September.

My Take

This is one of the first cases I’ve seen of a company stepping back from its EV goals. Obviously, it’s smoother for these companies to continue making internal combustion engines because they have perfected them over years and years of development, testing, and use.

EVs are still babies in comparison. There are going to be hiccups along the way.

I’m sure other companies besides Hertz will feel the growing pangs of trying something new. Even Tesla has had some bumps in the road to work through to make quality products for consumers.

I think in the near future, we’ll see similar issues with other companies realizing they are in over their heads and don’t have the resources to tackle EVs to the capacity they wish to do so.

Tip Your Driver Or Pay The Price: DoorDash Warns Delivery Delays Happening With No Tip


Customers ordering from the popular online delivery service DoorDash may want to think twice before skipping the tip.

The food delivery app announced that it is testing out a new pop-up warning for customers, prompting them to decide whether to proceed with an order that lacks a tip.

DoorDash emphasized that its drivers have the freedom to select which orders they wish to take and that they can even view whether a tip is included before taking on an order.

The company says that because of this option, if no tip is left, it’s possible that it might take more time for a driver to pick up the order.

My Take

If we’ve said it once, we’ve said it a thousand times: tip your delivery driver! It used to be common practice to tip your pizza delivery driver before these online apps became popular. So why change that practice just because you can order practically any food you want?

They are using their own vehicle and their own gas to hand-deliver your food to you, and you won’t tip them?

This is especially true if the driver can see upfront that they are not receiving a tip. And you can’t say, “Oh, I was going to tip in cash once they got here,” because drivers have heard that so many times and been disappointed nearly 100% of the time. They know it’s a lie or, extremely likely, a lie.

Tip your drivers up front. And if, for some reason, you’re completely disappointed in the job the driver did, you can change the tip later.

But also, don’t punish the driver for the restaurant taking too long with your order. It’s out of the driver’s control. Their pay shouldn’t be punished by something out of their control. Also, missing items are likely a restaurant issue, not a driver issue.

Consumers, stop making excuses and tip your drivers!

Here Are The Top 10 Most Popular Halloween Candies, According To Instacart


Halloween just passed, and many households stocked up on candy for trick-or-treaters — or themselves. But did you know that Instacart used those purchases to help track Halloween trends?

The grocery delivery service has collected data on the most popular Halloween candy in each state and also determined how different communities compare when it comes to being all-in on trick-or-treating.

Instacart launched a new tool that allows shoppers to enter their ZIP code to see their area’s “Scare Score” — or how much Halloween spirit they have. To determine the score, Instacart looked at the candy, costume, and decor purchases in each ZIP code.

According to the company’s calculations, the community of Lehi, Utah, has the most Halloween spirit. Second place went to Dallas, Texas, followed by Houston in third. Shoppers in these areas have purchased more Halloween paraphernalia than others on Instacart.

My Take

This is just a fun one to wrap up the week. The article lists the top 10 candies purchased, including Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Peanut M&Ms, Regular M&Ms, and more.

Personally, I had a lot of trick-or-treaters this year, and my candy was gone within 2.5 hours! What were your favorite costumes you saw this year?

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