A meeting of concerned drivers took place in Brisbane in early 2016, after the 20% fare reduction was put in place by Uber – with no consultation whatsoever with their “driver partners”.
At that meeting it was voted and carried that the association to be called “Ride Share Drivers Association of Australia” and that it be duly formalized as a non- profit organization with an inaugural committee of 6 financial members. That committee was elected by those present and all agreed to serve in the elected positions until a General Meeting was called. That meeting to take place within 15 months of incorporation. The Association was duly incorporated on 1st April 2016.
The current committee members are:
Dan Manchester President
Les Johnson Secretary
Troy Lake Treasurer
Bob Mason Committee
Adam Sherman Committee
David Dunstan Recently resigned.
At this stage a special thank you goes to David Dunstan who was instrumental in assembling the submission to the OPT Review. Many pointers in the submission have been put into the regulations that came into force on September 5th 2016 resulting in Queensland having the lowest compliance costs in Australia. Our committee has been invited to sit on the panel involved with formalizing the ongoing implementation of these new regulations and as such will be representing the interests of all ride share drivers irrespective of which platform they are active on. These new regulations are a work in progress and as such there is still much to do to protect the rights of ride share drivers.
Due to other commitments David Dunstan has resigned from the committee of the RSDAA and we wish him well with his ongoing endeavors.
During the short time that the Association has been incorporated we have achieved some serious gains against the odds. It is important to note that we have met with fellow committee members from the New Zealand Ubers Drivers Association and currently there is good dialogue with our fellow drivers “across the ditch”. They are currently testing the waters with court action commenced against Uber in their jurisdiction with a hearing date set for mid- November. Will be interesting to hear the results of that action.
Also there has been contact with one of the larger groups in the USA based out of New York but that is still in its infancy.
Since ride sharing or booked hire was made legal on 5th September 2016 there has been two new players who have entered the Queensland market, namely Gocatch and Limofied. Hopefully these two companies will grow to a point that they are able to take it up to Uber. Both Gocatch and Limofied are Australian based companies and as such they are responsible corporate citizens paying taxes etc. here in Australia.
We are seeing the emergence of many new small splinter groups who claim to represent the interests of drivers, keep in mind though that the RSDAA is the only organization that openly publishes who the committee members are and these members are active on the many Facebook pages that are dedicated to ride sharing. The committee has worked tirelessly over the last 7 months for the advancement of this fledgling industry and will continue to do so in the best interests of the members.
The time for sitting on the fence has passed and now is the time to become a financial member of the RSDAA and add weight to process to get “fair and sustainable rates” again, not the pittance that Uber expects us to survive on. Also time to become a unified voice working for a common goal not a rabble infighting continuously.
I will be announcing shortly the date for our first General Meeting for all financial members to attend.
Keep checking back onto our website for the details of when and where.