First, why should I have to go through additional regulation, based on the notion that some criminal MAY drive a cab? I’m not a criminal. There is no significant statistical chance of me being a criminal. So you want to add burdensome regulation, simply because you are afraid that someone may have committed a crime in the past?
I really don’t understand the argument being made here. It’s true of almost any regulation - it’s not aimed at the good actors, but the bad actors. And it’s really not a major burden, as evidenced by the fact that tens of thousands of drivers actually do it here, including Uber.
The problem with cities like Austin assessing in their own requirements, is that every city started doing their own regulations, which are totally different. Uber actually tried to get Texas to make a SouthView statewide law regulating it, so that it could be manageable, but it was blocked. But as it stands, the market actually resulted in the companies implementing their own background check process.
Sure, I don’t think it should be city-by-city either, it should in principle be a national thing (though I’ve no idea if that would in practice be feasible in the US). If it’s a public safety issue, that’s true no matter where you are. Like I say, I’m arguing against a no-licensing policy, not in favour of Austin’s.
In London, we’re not really taking about Uber and Lyft, but rather just individual unlicensed drivers. All if ubers’s drivers in London, for instance, are actually fully licensed as drivers. But even so, the idea that crime is confined to the unlicensed minicabs isn’t actually true. The large numbers of crimes reported in London for cab drivers actually also cover licensed cab drivers.
Agreed, though there were some stats leaked recently that broke out unlicensed cabs, and it does seem the risks are much higher and enforcement harder. And that’s all I’m asking for, really, that Uber drivers et al be licensed like every other minicab firm. They should compete on their technology, their pricing and their service, not on ability to skirt the law.