Taxi drivers protest: expect disruption

Brussels taxi drivers are today protesting political concessions granted to Uber drivers. The protests are expected to cause disruption this morning.

In the course of the morning taxi drivers plan to blockade several roads and intersections.  Expect the greatest disruption in the European District and on approaches from Leuven.

The taxi drivers promised a difficult rush hour for commuters, and this is what they got with traffic brought to a standstill at Schuman and elsewhere. Earlier Meiser was also affected.

The taxi sector is unhappy with the plans of the Brussels government that involve offering the 2,000 drivers who use the taxi hailing app Uber a temporary solution.  Under the plan Uber drivers could stay at work after 10 December in anticipation of the adoption in Brussels of a new taxi plan. Taxi drivers say they must comply to a whole set of rules, while this is not the case for Uber drivers.

Last week the Brussels court of appeal ordered Uber drivers to stop their activities.  The judge accepted that Uber drivers don’t fall under the law on taxis but enjoy the status of limousine companies and as a result are unable to accept last-minute orders. Uber drivers protested leading the Brussels government to promise a new taxi plan.

As an interim measure the Brussels government is suggesting modifying parts of taxi legislation dating from 1995 or even suspending it altogether.  Taxi drivers are unwilling to accept this state of affairs.

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