Riders will join the Transport Workers’ Union in telling an expert panel at the Fair Work Commission that they are paid below minimum rates, have no payment at all for some shifts, lack of protections when injured on the job, have no superannuation payments and are routinely unfairly sacked.
“Riders are expected to take on all of the risks of doing the job without any of the protections. The contracts are shams and the treatment is appalling. One Sydney rider was recently sacked after working with Deliveroo since December 2016. He was given no warning and the email firing him was identical to emails sent out to several other riders. Another rider was injured on the job and was off work for three weeks with no pay. He has not yet recovered from his injuries but is back at work because he needs to earn money,” said Tony Sheldon TWU National Secretary.
A survey of riders in Sydney and Melbourne has found that three out of four riders earn below minimum rates while almost one in two riders say they or someone they know has been injured on the job.
“We need to change the rules. The Fair Work Commission sets an annual wage but companies are actively avoiding their workers being covered by the system, meaning that it doesn’t apply to thousands of workers in the on-demand economy. The Commission needs to be able to inquire into these new forms of work and determine what rights should attach to that work. We need to decide if this legacy of precarious, piece work is one we want to leave our children,” Sheldon added.
Riders have protested in Melbourne and Sydney in recent months over pay and conditions. TWU riders have taken unfair dismissal cases to the Fair Work Commission after food delivery companies sacked them.
Riders and the TWU are appearing before an expert panel at the Fair Work Commission which conducts an annual wage review and decides on increases to the minimum wage across all industries and sectors.
Further information from the rider survey included:
- over 70% of riders said they should get entitlements such as sick leave.
- 1 in 4 riders (26%) work full time hours (40+ hours per week)
- 3 in 4 (76%) riders work 20 or more hours per week.
- over 26% work more than 40 hours a week
- The average age is just under 26 years