Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Ok, if you're going to strike you need to be much, much better organized. I didn't know there was supposed to be a taxi strike today until a cab pulled up next to the one I was in and the driver asked my driver. Turns out the other guy thought Monday was strike day and he'd stayed home. There were a lot of cabs out today for a strike.


At 11:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Cab rider,

What you see today in the disorganization of the DC Cabbies is how they are not able to communicate with each other much since they are all individual Cab owners and not the Goliath Cab companies like in neighboring areas as a group who lobbied for the unreasonably low fares that are now in DC. The group which consisted of K-street lobbiests organized on line and made sure that the fares are much lower than it was during the zone system, to what end I do not know. They had even presented their case as David verses Goliath, David being the K-Street lobbiests and Goliath being the Cabbies. If you put the two groups in comparison who would you think is David and who would be Goliath. If you want to read about it read what they had on the post then:


The result of their lobbying is the Cheapest meter taxi rate. Oh well at least they are good at what they do...


At 9:15 PM, Blogger brokemoto said...

The publicising of the strike was spotty.

It was well publicised at Diamond. The organisers secured permission from Diamond management to announce it over the company's dispatch radio and it was.

I do not know what happened at Yellow.

There was one flyer announcing it on the shop bulletin board at Schaeffer, but unless you bothered to read the bulletin board, you did not know about it. The organisers did not ask Mr. Schaeffer for permission to announce the strike over his dispatch radio. Several drivers asked me about it when I was on the microphone, I confirmed that it had been called, but that many drivers to whom I had spoken were not aware of it. Most of the drivers that were unaware of it were the veteran drivers, those with twenty years or better on the street. At least that was the case amoung the numerous drivers to whom I spoke.

The majority of the Schaeffer radio drivers who became aware of the strike on Tuesday, after they had come out to work, went home. More than a few ran several calls before they were aware of it.

The drivers who did not honour the strike confirmed that it had wide support; there were few kerb bumpers working downtown and the hotel stands were empty, save the Hyatt on New Jersey Avenue. Several drivers reported that it was business as usual there for the day. This is one of the few hotel stands that has mostly veteran drivers' working it.

I did honour the strike; I did not work my cab that day. Those of us who drive and dispatch do not feel that we are doing anything improper by reporting for our dispatch shifts and dispatching what calls we can. The drivers do pay for the radio service. Thus, the three companies that do dispatch, Diamond, Liberty and Yellow are obliged to provide dispatch service for those drivers who want to use it on any given day. In past strikes, the organisers have understood that we dispatchers and operators will report for our shifts and have not thought any the less of us for that. What was important to them was that we did not work our cabs, which most of us did not. I went home after my shift concluded, had four OUT OF SERVICE signs in the windows, and parked my cab.

Something that did happen in this strike, that has not happened in a while during strikes, were attempts to emforce the strike. There were reports of cabs' being pelted with eggs on Connecticut Avenue and the Police and Hack Inspectors had to be summoned to the Station, as strikers were blocking non-participating drivers there.

Still, organisers of future strikes would do well to see that the word gets out even to the veteran drivers. Just because the majority of us veteran drivers are American-born, does not mean that we are unwilling to work with you. I have worked with more than a few of you newcomers over the years as we stood up for ourselves at the People's Taxikab Kommissariat, the City Council and the Police.

I am also a D.C. Resident. I have made my displeasure known to Dear Revered Leader Kim il-Fenty on more than one occasion. The only vote that I would ever cast for him would be if I were on a jury trying him; I would vote to send him to jail without even thinking about it. What he has done, is doing and plans to do to the cab drivers is criminal.

Remember, Sharon Pratt Dixon Kelly had raised more money than had anyone else when she ran for a second term; she lost in the primary. Dear Revered Leader Kim il-Fenty is NOT invincible.

What have YOU done to-day to help make Fenty a ONE TERM MAYOR?


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