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BPD cracks down on gypsy cabs in Dudley Square

The Bay State Banner reports on the unlicensed cabs that ply the square.

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In the inner city where white cab drivers, and Uber and Lyft drivers don't want to pick up passengers do to fear of robbery or in some cases racism.

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Voting closed 15

But there are downsides as well. There is a reason he no longer drives a cab - "Temas was barred from driving a licensed taxi after a stint in state prison".

Temas seems like a good person just trying to make a living, but what is stopping a predator or violent criminal from doing this?

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Being a cabbie, uber, lyft driver is indeed dangerous. Same with food delivery drivers. I can't blame them for making snap judgements or refusing to pick up or drop off in certain neighborhoods. Too bad that black cabbie murdered by the scumbag white dude from Rhode Island about a month ago didn't refuse to let him in his cab. I wouldn't have faulted him one bit.

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yes the phrase "gypsy cab" is a thing, but...

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Especially after you've been drinking for a while.

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Previous commenter here. Funny enough, I'm a speech therapist by profession. I'm curious if you actually do anything that is helpful to other humans?

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how are gypsy cabs illegal but lyft/uber allowed ?

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I'm sure it was Uber and Lyft drivers who called the police and filed a former complaint with City Hall because they have the financial influence with big downtown corporate offices.
Well, I've got news for you.....these gypsy cabs have loyal customers (I am one of them) whose cell phone numbers are on speed dial in their customers' phones. My gypsy cabbies have become close friends over the years. When I don't have money, they still give me a ride because they know I take care of them for many years loyally. They help carry my groceries upstairs because I can no longer do it. So these gypsy cabs will just go around the block and meet their customers. Fuck Uber and Lyft and their corporate ass!!

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Voting closed 47

If you've got their numbers on speed dial, they're not breaking the law by transporting you for hire, since you've prearranged a ride by calling them, just as Uber and Lyft (and any livery service) operate. (They might technically need a livery plate and a CDL but I'm not so clear on that regulation.) It's also a lot safer for you and for them since you have a relationship of trust built up over the years that neither of you will assault/rob/rape/kill the other. If you're paying them directly, Uber/Lyft aren't taking a cut, either.

Reading the story in the Banner, I think the business owners recognized the unmet need being filled by the gypsy cabs, but were unhappy with the other activities going down ("arguments, fights, cat-calling and other public nuisances") where the gypsy cabs were picking up, and that's what led to police enforcement.

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You need a medallion to accept street hails or unreserved pickups. Uber, etc get around that stipulation by requiring a scheduled pickup via their apps. You can't legally flag down a uber.

The article implied these drivers might not have valid licenses or vehicle inspections. Presumably they wouldn't pass a background check or they'd be driving for the ride share companies already.

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lyft/uber dont have c.d.l.'s either. the medallion ensures that the licensed cab has commercial insurance as well as the department of weights & measures performs yearly inspection. i dont think anything is stopping a ride-share driver from lapsing on their inspection sticker for years.

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Over 10 years ago Menino decreed that it shall be so, and the Camry Hybrid is now the defacto Boston cab. Again: Everyone hates cabbies (including me) but they are taxed, regulated and insured up the wazoo while the others are allowed to skate by like pizza delivery boys.

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There was a Spotlight series in the Globe several years ago (https://www3.bostonglobe.com/metro/specials/taxi/?arc404=true) about the cab industry in Boston and how the large medallion holders were allowed to self-insure at the absolute minimum levels (something like $30K/accident for liability) by keeping money on deposit with the state. Plus they'd fight every liability claim in court and the medallion ownership was structured through dozens of LLCs and holding companies to keep the parent ownership from facing any potential liability.

Uber and Lyft are scumbag companies, but they have got nothing on the guys who historically controlled most of the medallions in Boston.

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Not $30k. The minimum liability insurance for taxis is $20k, according to the second article in your link.

Meanwhile, black cars serving Logan need $1 million, and bicycle messengers need $50k.

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i dont think anything is stopping a ride-share driver from lapsing on their inspection sticker for years.

Uber/Lyft driver here. They require a photograph of your inspection sticker (along with registration, license, proof of insurance) before you can drive, and they do track when it expires and require you to update it.

MA also has an entirely separate rideshare vehicle inspection program in addition to the standard vehicle inspections.

So yes, there are plenty of things stopping a rideshare driver from letting their inspection sticker lapse.

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You have effectively just alerted the Mass DOR and IRS that you may not be claiming these cash earnings for tax purposes and also alerted either a prior employer's long-term disability provider and/or federal SSDI caseworker that you are 1) fit and able to work; and 2) likely making earnings that approach the supplemental earnings ceiling for your disability benefits.

Jose - if you are out there, please don't talk to anymore reporters.

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I was going to ask why he doesn't get a part-time job at minimum wage and earn the same $50 a day, but your points are even more relevant.

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It’s up to you how pc you want to be, but that expression is offensive to some.

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They'll round 'em all up in the paddy wagon?

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Good one, Gary C. I’ll admit I laughed. I’m not Irish but I am of part gypsy descent so maybe I get a pass by extension?

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