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Taxi drivers protested "against monopolies," shouting that "the struggle is in the streets and not in Congress."
A massive mobilization of taxi drivers took to the streets of Madrid, and other cities in Spain, on Saturday, to protest against the licenses of Tourism Vehicles with Driver (VTC) given by the government to companies such as Uber or Cabify, while calling for a higher regulation of said companies.
The mobilization, headed by a banner stating "taxi (drivers) demand regulation of the VTC," went from Atocha to Plaza Cibeles. This march follows a 16-day protest that ended on February 5.
Taxi drivers protested "against monopolies," shouting that "the struggle is in the streets and not in Congress." When the protesters arrived at the Cibeles square, they read a manifesto "against the 'uberization' of public services and against the privatization, precarity, margination and poverty."
Jose Miguel Funez, spokesperson for the Professional Taxi Federation of Madrid, explained to local media that the taxi unions will continue their fight to denounce "the undercover privatization of public services," as, according to him, 'it's already been done with other sectors such as education and health.'
Funez stated that the unions of taxi drivers are not going to "allow the destruction of a sector" that is mainly formed by autonomous people to favor "multinational companies."
Social and political movements were also present in the march to back the struggles of the taxi drivers. Banners in favor of better pensions for the elderly, another social sector, were also seen during the protest. Social movements attended the march because they favor the Spanish "working class."
In September, Spain's government gave the ride-hailing companies four years to comply with regulations, granting them just one new license for every 30 taxi licenses.