Top secret organizations exist throughout the world and are ingrained into the roots of human history. These organizations are shrouded in superstition and mystery, such as the Freemason, The Skull and Bones, and – even – the Illuminati. These societies have been preserved only for the most elite and chosen.

There’s one other organization that has escaped the limelight of popular culture and folklore. However, it’s not as veiled in unknowns as other groups. This organization is the Independent Drivers Guild in New York. They may get together once a month to discuss their favorite defensive driving course online, but, more importantly, they were created out of the need for a unionized force of people who make their living from driving.

To enter the guild, you must be a For-Hire Vehicle worker, employed by a company, who lives in New York. To become a full member, you must pay the monthly dues of $18. The guild has fought and won a slew of victories that have changed the benefits and opportunities for drivers employed by ride sharing companies.

Protecting Hard Earned Pay

The guild is currently working together to achieve equal pay for their members, especially those who have experienced wage discrepancies by taxi and limousine companies. There’s been a trend of financial exploitations and poverty-like wages that drivers are experiencing while employed with these niche companies.

The guild is collecting emails and signatures to bring to the Taxi and Limousine Commission in order to acquire a hearing focusing on discrepancies in wages.

Parking for Bathroom Emergencies

Another major concern the guild is attacking on all fronts is restroom breaks for their drivers. Behind-the-wheel workers can experience grueling, sedentary work days where opportunities to use the restroom can be few and far between – especially in the big city where parking is hard to find. Moreover, taking time to park the car and search for the restroom could cost drivers upwards to hundreds of dollars over time.

The guild of independent drivers is campaigning to make restrooms more accessible to their members through the city. Their first target is Manhattan, where members have an exhausting, time-sensitive experience searching for the next available parking spot. In addition to making bathroom access easier around the city, they are also targeting the bathrooms in JFK airport. Everyone knows the JFK airport bathrooms are the best in the city.

Driver Healthcare Bill

According to a guild survey, 33.6% of its members do not have access to healthcare. The organization wants to change this. They argue that, “It’s appalling that in one of the wealthiest cities in America, the people responsible for the safe transportation of over 200,000 people per day don’t have access to affordable health insurance.” In other words, professional drivers are responsible for helping the people of New York get around every day – they need to be compensated for it.

Make Tipping Easier

The guild recently celebrated a victory in making it easier for drivers to receive tips. In the past, drivers found it challenging to make ends meet with the low wages and exploitation in services. To make matters worse, drivers weren’t receiving tips from their passengers because the apps and their interfaces were making it difficult to do so.

Since their campaign, large ride sharing companies buckled under the pressure and made tipping more accessible to their drivers. The guild is making big waves in the ride sharing industry, especially by protecting their members!