Should Uber drivers be allowed to carry a concealed weapon? It’s an interesting topic, and a little bit controversial, but that’s what we’re here for. Recently I shared a partner video where Kon recommended that drivers carry a weapon, so this is definitely an idea that’s out there.
Take a look at my video, then read the video transcript below if you prefer to read.
I get emailed about this a lot, and there have been a lot of stories in the news about shootings involving Uber or Lyft drivers. Sometimes it’s drivers getting shot, which is obviously very unfortunate. Sometimes it’s drivers saving the day, though, by shooting a robber, or shooting a criminal, or something like that.
These violent events are very rare
The first thing I want you to keep in mind, though, is that Uber alone does almost a hundred million trips a month in the U.S., and these numbers are growing, plus add in Lyft’s numbers, tens of millions of rides. So, these types of situations, even if five or 10 of them are happening a month, they’re still extremely, extremely rare. That’s the first thing I want you to keep in mind.
But if you’re out at 2:00 or 3:00 AM driving people around, near bars, picking people up at strip clubs, that’s maybe not the safest area of town to be in. Especially at those times. Even though the odds might be really low, you might be a little more likely to see some bad stuff happen than if you’re out driving at 2:00 to 3:00 PM.
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Uber allows drivers to carry non-lethal weapons, but not guns
I actually don’t own a gun, but I do have a strong opinion on the subject. I know this is a hot topic for a lot of drivers because I, frankly, know that a lot of my viewers, a lot of you guys out in the audience that are driving, do have guns, so I don’t want to pretend like it’s not an issue. Uber’s policy actually allows for drivers to carry non-lethal weapons, but where they draw the line is guns for drivers and passengers. I want
You can actually find their policy right on Uber’s website if you search at help.uber.com Here’s what it says, “Our goal is to ensure that everyone has a safe and reliable ride, that’s why Uber prohibits riders and drivers from carrying firearms of any kind in a vehicle while using our app. Anyone who violates this policy may lose access to Uber.”
Interesting stuff there. I think that this was obviously written by a lawyer. They are sort of saying that it’s our policy that you can’t have it, but they say anyone who violates this policy may lose access to Uber. I think there are some interesting legal issues because, you never want to break the law in your state, but if you have the legal right to carry a firearm or a concealed weapon, I personally think you should be able to do it while driving for Uber. Another way to put it is federal, state law sort of supersedes whatever the hell Uber says, in my book.
You may not get in trouble with the law, but you’ll get in trouble with Uber
You have to keep in mind, though, that Uber has deactivated drivers for violating this policy. I mean, is that right? Are they even allowed to do that? Honestly, I don’t think so. But do they do it and does it happen? Yes. I think that’s sort of what you have to keep in mind is that it may be legal for you to do that, as long as you’re following your state and federal laws you’re not going to get in trouble with the law. Uber makes up the rules that are in their best interest, and you could imagine that a lot of passengers don’t want to be riding with drivers who are armed with guns.
Aren’t we independent contractors?
That type of employee-like control is really where I have a big problem sometimes with how Uber operates. Now, there’s obviously a lot of good that they do, but at the same time they do use this independent contractor designation. That’s the model that they use with their drivers, and I think that’s fine. I think a lot of drivers, when I’ve polled drivers, and when I’ve talked to drivers, a majority of them would prefer independent contractor. I prefer being an independent contractor. I don’t want to be an employee and have all these rules. But, I also feel that drivers should be treated as true independent contractors. With situations like this, it just feels a lot like employee-like control. Uber wants to tell you what to do, yet they don’t pay you like an employee.
That’s my two cents on this. I’d be curious to know what you guys think. Feel free to let me know, should drivers, should they be allowed to carry these weapons? What do you think about Uber’s policy? If you’re a driver in this situation, what do you do? How do you handle it? How do you think drivers in your area handle it? Definitely would love to hear your feedback on this one.
If you have any questions for me, don’t hesitate to reach out. Take care!
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