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3 Mar 2021

Independent via AP news wire

Spain: Food delivery workers call on government to approve promised law granting right to choose their employment status

"Spanish food delivery workers march for law on their status", 3 March 2021

Food delivery workers protested across Spain on Wednesday, urging the government to approve a promised law granting them the right to choose between being company staff or self-employed.

More than 2,000 delivery riders gathered to protest in at least 10 Spanish cities, including Madrid and Barcelona, private news agency Europa Press reported.

The proposed legal changes are the latest affecting companies and workers in the gig economy. Last month, Britain’s top court ruled that Uber drivers should be classed as “workers” and not self-employed, in what was seen as a major setback for the ride-hailing giant.

The Spanish government initially consulted groups representing the workers as it drew up the new law, known as “ley rider.” But those groups now complain they are being ignored and that the legislation is overdue.

The secretary of state for employment, Joaquín Pérez Rey, said Tuesday the government is putting the finishing touches to the law, which he called “an extremely complex matter,” and said its publication is “imminent.”

Spanish media reports say the government may give companies a three-month grace period to register their workers as employees.