Cab service to and from O'Hare and Midway International Airports was temporarily halted Wednesday morning as hundreds of cab drivers protested part of Mayor Rahm Emanuel's budget proposal, which would allow ride-share services to pick up passengers at the airports for the first time.
Cab Drivers United/AFSCME Local 2500 organized the protest and refused to pick up passengers at cab stands at both airports for about two hours. The protest was set to end at 12:45 p.m.
Emanuel's budget proposal includes a fare increase for cab rides, but it also allows ride-share services like Uber and Lyft to compete with taxis for passengers at the airports.
Members of the cab drivers union claim the ride-share services do not have the same regulations as traditional cabs.
"The mayor's proposal is a sweetheart deal for Uber, a $50 billion enterprise that doesn't need another giveaway, but a job-killer for hardworking Chicago cab drivers," Cab Drivers United/AFSCME Local 2500 said in a statement after the mayor's budget address Tuesday. "When corporations like Uber provide the same service as licensed cabs but don't play by the same rules, they undercut public safety and jobs. Last week, our unions released a plan to raise $65 million a year by requiring Uber to follow all the same rules as hardworking cab drivers."