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December 2, 2015- Karygiannis concerned about TDSB workshop flyer recruiting UBER drivers

TORONTO – Jim Karygiannis, Councillor for Ward 39, Scarborough-Agincourt, has written to the Honourable MaryAnn Mihychuk, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour; the Honourable Reza Moridi, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities; and, Ms. Robin Pilkey, Chair of the Toronto District School Board (TDSB), expressing his concern about a flyer issued by Employment Ontario advertising a workshop entitled “U B E R Hiring Event”.

“Employment Ontario’s mandate is to ‘help people get the training, skills and experience to achieve their goals.’ “Employment Ontario is an agency of the provincial government and is partially funded by the federal government.” said Mr. Karygiannis. “With all the controversy over Uber, one would think that Employment Ontario would have reservations about advertising ‘employment opportunities’ with Uber.”

UBER hires individuals who operate as their private vehicles on a pay-per-ride basis, much like traditional taxi drivers.

“Officials from the insurance industry have advised that insurance carried by individuals on their private vehicles becomes null and void when the vehicle is used for commercial purposes, which includes pay-per-ride transactions.” Mr. Karygiannis commented.  “This leaves the driver and the passengers without any insurance in the event of an accident.”

Section 39.1, of the Ontario Highway Traffic Act prohibits a driver from picking up a passenger for the purpose of transporting him or her for compensation where a licence, permit or authorization is required by a municipal by-law.

“By hiring individuals, who do not have a licence, to pick up a passenger for the purpose of transporting him or her for compensation is enticing individuals to break Ontario law.  Is this the type of employment opportunities Employment Ontario should be encouraging?” Mr. Karygiannis stated.  “I want the Ministers and the Chair of the TDSB to investigate this practice and ensure that the training and employment opportunities offered by Employment Ontario are not encouraging people to break provincial and municipal laws.”

Letter to Ministers                                                                                  Uber Hiring Event posterUber Hiring Event TDSB