Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Canada has welcomed the potential adoption of Uber in London. The group says the ride-sharing company offers consumers a safe choice alongside taxis to avoid drink driving.
“Should London city council fail to support ridesharing on Feb.14, Londoners will lose access to a responsible choice at the end of a night,” said MADD Canada CEO Andrew Murie in a news release Friday.
“Requiring personal ridesharing vehicles to have cameras, as London is considering, is not necessary. In fact, no other city in the world has such a requirement,” Murie said.
“MADD Canada is asking that London city council remove the requirement for personal ridesharing vehicles to have cameras, and not risk losing a valuable community safety partner in Uber.”
The council in London is voting Tuesday on a proposed bylaw that would continue the city’s path to adopting Uber. The vote will centre on the potential of security cameras being installed by mandate in all Uber cars. This is already a requirement for taxi cabs in London, although Uber does not like the plan.
MADD Canada has collaborated with Uber on a nationwide initiative that promotes safe and sober driving. In a press release, MADD points out that alcohol and/or drugs influenced collisions are the leading cause of criminal death in Canada.
Uber has previously applauded the London City council for the amendments it made to its taxi regulations. The tweak to the bylaw brings ride-sharing companies like Uber under the city’s regulations. App-based companies that offer a service for passengers to connect with drivers are called transportation network companies.
The council approved the changes on Tuesday, but not without opposition from some politicians, including councillors Bill Armstrong and Josh Morgan. Deputy mayor Paul Hubert also voiced his concerns about Uber being introduced into London.
Uber has not said if its plans to roll out legally in the city, but the fact the company has welcomed the decision means that Uber will likely be on London’s streets in a legal capacity soon.
“It’s good,” Chris Schafer of Uber Canada said after the vote. “We’re moving forward with recommendations for a bylaw that lines up well with what other Ontario cities (have done).”
Under the new regulations, price surging has been allowed for the busiest times, allowing the city-standard $3.50 to be raised during these periods. However, this is only allowed for app-based services because customers know how much they pay beforehand. This was met with criticism by some councillors who believe this gives Uber an unfair advantage over traditional cabbies.