An industry group representing Saskatchewan taxi companies is supporting a bill allowing ride-sharing services to operate in the province.
Sandra Boire, a spokesperson for the Saskatchewan Taxi Cab Association (STCA), said the province’s recently passed Vehicle For Hire Act addresses many of the concerns cab companies have had about services like Lyft and Uber.
“From day one, we said we just need to have a level playing field and we believe that this legislation works very well to create that level playing field for everybody,” Boire said.
The new law establishes that companies must have liability insurance with a minimum of $1 million in coverage, while each driver must obtain a Class 4 licence and undergo a criminal record check.
The STCA has mounted a social media campaign highlighting news stories from around the world of assaults committed by Uber or Lyft drivers. Boire said that campaign will come to an end as the province has agreed to make ride-share companies abide by the same security procedures as traditional cab services.
“They’ve taken their time and really worked with us and worked with other stakeholders to become educated, to make sure that they’re making the right decisions and, you know, listening to what we’ve had to say,” Boire said.
Boire said the STCA remains concerned the law doesn’t include a requirement for security cameras in vehicles.
However, she acknowledged the province doesn’t require cameras in any vehicle for hire, with that particular piece of regulation handled by municipalities.
While the law has opened the door, to date, there remains no timeline on when any ride-share service might begin operating in the province.
In addition to her role with the STCA, Boire serves as operations manager for the Saskatoon-based Comfort Cab company.
—With files from Chris Vandenbreekel