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UTCC Voice: Newsletter of the United Taxidrivers Community Council (Online Edition)


REPORT: Monthly meeting with Department of Consumer Services

The United Taxidrivers Community Council is happy to report on our latest meeting with Deputy Commissioner Shelley Riedle, of the Dept. of Consumer Services. We have been holding monthly meetings for the last four or five months. The UTCC sifts through the many issues that cabdrivers bring to our attention, and we try to pick the three or four topics for discussion very carefully.

Common Sense Corner: What to do, and what not to do on the roads...

By “Common Sense Man”

I know that not everybody drives the same way I do, meaning that people are different and they drive different ways. Here are some common sense tips from a veteran cabdriver to keep you and those around you safe on the roads. Remember if someone is in a hurry, let him go! It takes 2 impatient drivers to create an accident…

Comedy and tragedy in the life of a cabdriver

There was a cabdriver who picked up a fare at 4:30 in the morning at the Red No Five bar on Halsted and Hubbard Street. You should know that this is a very expensive bar, with a large cover charge and very overpriced drinks and very pretty people who have money who go there. His fare was a young white American male, dressed very nice. He was going right up Halsted St. to Webster, at 2200 North.

Parking While Praying

A reminder: the agreement the UTCC made with the Dept. of Aviation and Ground Transportation was that taxis who needed to park after having gone through the stamp booth would need to park beyond the pole with the yellow ribbon tied around it. We have noticed lately that some cabdrivers are not driving far enough down the lane before parking. We remind you once again that you may be liable to be ticketed if you do not drive far enough down the access road past the pole with the yellow ribbon.

UTCC launches membership drive

The United Taxidrivers Community Council started its membership drive on September 22, 2008 and is proud to announce our first member, Farah Musse Mohamud who came to our table at Baba Palace to pay his dues and receive his membership card. (See photo)

Since that day, we have had an amazing response from you drivers, with many community leaders joining our membership ranks, and vowing to promote membership in the UTCC in their respective communities.

To my fellow African Drivers

Good day, my fellow cab drivers. Many times we’ve all talked about having representation for us cab drivers. This is it!

UTCC is the voice for cab drivers, formed by cab drivers to represent us. As we all know, without representation, we’re nothing.

I started driving a cab 23 years ago, like many other African drivers. We told ourselves that after college we would stop driving.

However, after college we still drive. After getting a job, we drove and after being laid off from work, we drove.

UTCC calls for unification of cabdrivers’ movement

The United Taxidrivers Community Council called for a Unity Forum of Chicago cabdrivers on Sat. Aug. 9th. It was held at Baba Palace, at Orleans and Chicago Avenues in Chicago, where the idea for the UTCC itself was born back in January of this year, 2008.

The UTCC decided to call this Forum three weeks ago in order to try to bring together the many perceived ‘groups’ of cabdriver organizations that we had been hearing about, and some selected leaders in their communities that we had come into contact with in our organizing efforts.

Violence rises sharply

Outraged cabdrivers take action after City of Chicago inexplicably rejects “Driver Safety Placard” proposal

After a wave of attacks and beatings against cabdrivers, the United Taxidrivers Community Council (UTCC) decided to ask the Department of Consumer Services (DCS) to install “Driver Safety Placards.” The proposed placards simply said: “Battery of an on duty taxi driver is a class 3 felony, punishable by up to 5 years imprisonment,” referring to a new law that protects cabdrivers from workplace violence.

Communication...

Communication is an art that must be open and sincere in our industry. As we struggle to survive and care for our families, some of us truly lack the basic knowledge of effective communication.

Comedy and tragedy in the life of a cabdriver

Unanswered Questions

A few months ago, I was sent to pick up a fare from Terminal 1 at O’Hare Airport. I picked up a woman with two children and lots of bags. She wanted to go the Economy Parking Lot- as we got there, she asked to be dropped of inside the gated area.