London - Uber collected more than 500 000 signatures in less than 24 hours on a petition to protest
London’s decision to not renew the company’s taxi license, a setback in one of its most lucrative markets.
The campaign on the website Change.org asks London Mayor
Sadiq Khan to reverse
Transport for London’s Friday
decision, and is being promoted on the company’s app in London. While
the ride-hailing app is targeting 1 million supporters, Khan defended
his position that while he supports innovative businesses, all companies
must adhere to high standards of safety and security.
“I have every sympathy with Uber drivers and customers affected by
this decision but their anger really should be directed at Uber,” Khan
said in a response posted on the website on Saturday.
“They have let down
their drivers and customers by failing, in the view of TfL, to act as a
fit and proper operator.”
Uber said 3.5 million Londoners rely on Uber for "a safe, reliable
and affordable ride" and that 40 000 drivers depended on the app for
their livelihood. The company said its drivers have been “through the
same enhanced background checks as black cab drivers.”
While the petition doesn’t trigger any legal or regulatory process,
the San Francisco-based company has a history of successfully using
petitions and loyalty of the public to pressure city governments. It
succeeded in reversing regulatory decisions in London and in New York in
Uber urged customers to sign the petition in a tweet posted at
13:41 on Friday, about two hours after the London agency’s decision.
Uber has 21 days after the September 30 revocation to file an appeal. It
can continue the service until the end of the appeals process.
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