Uber and Lyft driver Takele Gobena joined in a press conference at City Hall on Monday to tell his story: After driving 55 hours a week to put himself through school, he brought his earnings, mileage, and hours to an accountant last year for help with his taxes. It turns out his hourly wage came to less than $3 an hour.
News outlets quickly reported on his story. Around 3:30 p.m., the Seattle Times published an interview with Takele, in which he also shared that he was concerned about retaliation from Uber for even talking about his working conditions:
Around 4:30 p.m., The Stranger posted an article that led with Takele's story:
And then, at 6:50 last night, as reported by PubliCola this morning, Takele got a short message from Uber saying he'd been deactivated:
After the press caught wind of this and started to ask Uber questions about retaliation, Uber backpedaled fast, saying it was all just a misunderstanding over some paperwork. (According to Takele, they said it was because his insurance was expired—even though his insurance doesn't expire until the end of the year.)
If the only reason Takele got his job back is because Uber's shady dealing went public, it's just another reason for all of us to join in and speak out: