July 19, 2021


A full bench of the Fair Work Commission will today hear Deliveroo’s appeal following a judgment which found that Diego Franco was an employee and unfairly sacked in a “perfunctory, callous approach” by the food delivery giant.

Diego Franco was sacked with a week’s notice early in the pandemic, which Commissioner Cambridge described as being “most notable for its absence of compassion”.

Deliveroo’s appeal submission disputes the finding that Diego Franco was an employee, that he was unfairly sacked and claims Franco should not be reinstated due to his association with the TWU which has been outspoken on Deliveroo’s exploitative business model.

Commissioner Cambridge found that Franco was an employee after applying what he called “the multifactorial test, the overall picture, and the binary outcome”, in which he examined Deliveroo’s ability to control Franco’s work, Franco’s inability to negotiate terms of his agreement, and his inability to delegate work to someone else due to the low pay he received from Deliveroo.

TWU National Secretary Michael Kaine said the judgment was unequivocal and Diego Franco’s family should not be forced to suffer through the stress of an appeal.

“Diego and his wife recently welcomed their second baby girl and are trying to move on with their lives. The last thing they need is the burden of having to prove once again that Diego was brutally and unfairly sacked in the height of a pandemic and economic recession.

“The findings of the unfair dismissal case were clear and conclusive. The judgment left no room for doubt and highlighted the cruelty of food delivery companies. Deliveroo must put to bed its exploitative model which deliberately misclassifies riders and pour its energy into ensuring fair and safe minimum wages and rights.

“This case proves the need for Federal Government regulation and a tribunal to provide minimum rights and protections for hardworking riders like Diego,” he said.

Last month Deliveroo applied to delay the Commission’s orders to reinstate and backpay Franco until a decision of the appeal is reached. Both parties agreed that Deliveroo would pay Franco $300 a week pending the outcome of the appeal, which Deliveroo cannot claim back regardless of the result.

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