After Series of National Protests, Uber CEO Steps Down From Role as Trump Advisor
Responding to pressure from Silicon Valley Rising and nationwide allies, Travis Kalanick leaves Trump’s advisory council
After a delegation of workers and community leaders from Silicon Valley Rising rallied outside Uber’s Palo Alto office in a national day of action, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick agreed to step down from President Trump’s business advisory council. Uber’s response came after thousands pulled out their phones to #DeleteUber over the weekend, and with a string of actions in the Bay Area and across almost a dozen cities in the works by allies like the Center for Popular Democracy, EBASE, ACCE, and Jobs with Justice.
“This is an important step for Uber towards standing with our communities to resist President Trump’s attacks,” said Derecka Mehrens, executive director of Working Partnerships USA and co-founder of Silicon Valley Rising. “Now we need Uber and companies across Silicon Valley to take proactive action against hate, and stand with our immigrant communities and workers by building an inclusive tech economy that shows a better alternative to the hateful and divisive policies we’re seeing from this administration.”
As the Trump administration launches attacks on immigrants, workers’ rights, and our cities, Silicon Valley Rising is actively engaging tech companies to stand up for their workers, neighbors, and customers by defending immigrants and minority groups; creating middle-class jobs for the service workers who cook, clean, and protect their campuses; and tackling Silicon Valley’s affordable housing crisis.
Since its founding two years ago, Silicon Valley Rising has been inspiring the tech industry to create opportunity for all workers in the tech economy. The collaborative campaign has won higher wages and union representation for bus drivers, cafeteria workers, and most recently, 3,000 security officers at tech campuses – the largest organizing victory in recent California history.
“In response to the backlash from Uber drivers and intense pressure from labor and community groups, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick has heeded our demands and stepped down from the Trump Administration’s Advisory Council,” said Ben Field, Executive Office of the South Bay AFL-CIO Labor Council, which co-leads Silicon Valley Rising. “Uber has a long anti-worker history and this is the first step it has taken to stand with its drivers. We will continue to pressure Uber to respect its drivers and riders — many of whom are immigrants — and build an inclusive tech economy.”
Uber has faced national outrage since it broke a solidarity strike by taxi workers at JFK airport this weekend. The firm has a long history of actively fighting to deny its drivers fair wages, paid leave, and health care. It has been mired in lawsuits over misclassifying drivers as independent contractors, refusing to accommodate blind passengers’ service dogs, and a host of other issues.
Silicon Valley Rising (SVR) is a coordinated campaign driven by a powerful coalition of labor, faith leaders, community based organizations and workers aiming to inspire the tech industry to build an inclusive middle class in Silicon Valley.
Silicon Valley Rising is co-led by the South Bay AFL-CIO Labor Council, which represents 98 unions in Silicon Valley, and Working Partnerships USA, a community organization that drives the movement for a just economy by bringing together public policy innovation and the power of grassroots organizing.