Uber And Lyft Are Dropping Mask Mandate For Drivers And Customers

Uber And Lyft Are Dropping Mask Mandate For Drivers And Customers

Both Uber and Lyft will no longer require drivers and passengers to wear face masks following a new ruling enacted by U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle in Tampa, Florida.

The mandate “violates the procedures required for agency rulemaking,” said Mizelle.

Uber Passengers who are uncomfortable riding with unmasked drivers can cancel their rides and receive a full refund.

To that end, customers must call the company’s cancelation team and explain why they do not want to take the ride.

The company still recommends both drivers and riders wear a mask. “Masks are no longer required, but they’re still recommended,” the company wrote.

“The CDC still recommends wearing a mask if you have certain personal risk factors and/or high transmission levels in your area. Remember: Many people may still feel safer wearing a mask because of personal or family health situations, so please be respectful of their preferences.”

Likewise, a Lyft spokesperson stated that masks are no longer required when riding or driving with the company.

“Health safety reasons,” such as not wearing a mask, “will no longer appear as cancelation options in the app,” they said Tuesday. In addition, riders and passengers will no longer have to leave the front seat empty or open the windows.

“We know that everyone has different comfort levels, and anyone who wants to continue wearing a mask is encouraged to do so. As always, drivers or riders can decline to accept or cancel any ride they don’t wish to take,” the spokesperson said. 

The US Department of Justice has said, however, that if the CDC concludes that the mask requirement is still necessary for public transportation it will overturn the Florida Judge’s ruling. 

Not everyone has welcomed the decision. According to members of Gig Workers Rising, the new policy could harm both their health and their drivers’ ratings.

“We’re in a confined space and if a rider refuses to wear a mask and we ask them to leave the car, we’re at risk of getting a bad review and possibly deactivated.” San Francisco Bay Area rideshare driver and Gig Workers Rising organizer Rondu Gfantt said in a statement.