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6 Mar 2023

Qatar: Subcontracted Talabat workers allegedly faced wage theft, deportation without due process & passport confiscation; parent co. Delivery Hero responds

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In February 2023, NGO FairSquare reported on the case of 160 migrant workers in Qatar, working exclusively for the food delivery platform Talabat, who had been subject to wage theft. In the worst cases, workers had been unpaid for up to 8 months - including during the Qatar 2022 World Cup which took place in November and December of last year.

The men are employed by two local companies, Infinity Delivery Services and Infinity Limousine Services, and are subcontracted to carry out delivery for food service companies. Some of the riders have filed labour complaints and subsequently been deported; others were arrested prior to deportation after Infinity reportedly filed a number of absconding cases against their employees. One man died in January, reportedly following an accident during a period of non-payment.

Talabat told FairSquare at least 48 riders in Qatar were affected while Infinity denied any wrongdoing. Business & Human Rights Resource Centre wrote to Talabat's parent company, German-headquartered Delivery Hero to respond to the allegations and invited it to outline any human rights due diligence Talabat undertakes prior to entering into contracts in Qatar, including how Delivery Hero is ensuring remedy for affected Talabat drivers. Delivery Hero's response can be read in full below, alongside Talabat's response to FairSquare.

Talabat has failed in its duty of care towards these workers and it should remedy that situation immediately by paying the men what they’re owed. Instead it wants to pass the buck to a Qatari justice system that is seemingly devoting most of its efforts to deporting the men who have been abused rather than holding those responsible criminally accountable.
Nick McGeehan, FairSquare co-director