Members of the Independent Workers’ Union of Great Britain (IWGB) Couriers & Logistics Branch in Sheffield are going on strike today against app-based ‘gig economy’ corporations including Deliveroo, Uber and Stuart.
These key workers face unfair, automated terminations, precarious conditions and declining pay. They are demanding a living wage, a freeze on recruitments which drive down wages, and due process for terminations. Over 70 couriers are expected to take part.
The strike will involve a socially distanced moving picket with workers joining in their vehicles from 12 noon at Mappin Street. They will tour the city ending at Division Street. Pickets will be in place at Hillsborough, Woodseats, London Road & Farm Road for the remainder of the day.
Over 60 MPs across parties have already signed an Early Day Motion backing the IWGB “Clapped and Scrapped” campaign against unfair terminations, which highlights how key workers applauded by the nation during the first Covid-19 lockdown are being exploited or terminated with no due process and without any evidence of wrongdoing on their part. Workers are demanding a fair process for terminations which respects basic rights to trade union representation, to a hearing and to appeal.
Mohamed Abdul, IWGB member and UberEats courier based in Sheffield, said: “I worked through lockdown without taking a single day off. It was really frightening at times but the country was clapping for us and we knew we were needed, so off we went. Over two years of service for UberEats I’ve completed over 8000 deliveries with a customer rating of 97-100 percent. In August I was terminated by an automated email: no due process, no hearing, no chance. It’s no way to treat frontline workers.”
Abdirisak Hared, IWGB member and courier based in Sheffield, says: “In July I was terminated first by Deliveroo and then by UberEats. I’ll probably never know the exact reasons and I wasn’t given any chance to appeal or explain. You don’t even get to speak to a human being, that shows how much these gig economy companies value frontline workers. They clap us with one hand and rob us with the other.”