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UK: Just Eat offers couriers minimum wage and sick pay, marking shift from independent contractor model; ; unions urge consultation for better impact

“Just Eat to offer 1,500 Liverpool couriers minimum hourly rate and sick pay”, 21 April 2021

Just Eat is to offer 1,500 takeaway couriers in Liverpool minimum pay, sick pay and holiday pay by the end of the year as it shifts away from using independent contractors.

The food delivery group … said it would expand a worker model for couriers that it was already operating in London and Birmingham…

The latest expansion comes after the Just Eat boss, Jitse Groen, said he wanted to end gig-working across Europe at his company. Like rivals including Deliveroo, most of the takeaways delivered via Just Eat are transported by self-employed contractors without guaranteed pay or paid sick leave. Some are under direct contracts and some work via courier firms such as Stuart.

Riders also work set shifts, are provided with e-bikes or e-mopeds, which are maintained by the company, and will have the option to operate from a central hub, where they can pick up equipment and take breaks…

The Independent Workers Union of Great Britain said Just Eat’s new model was “a step in the right direction but still not where it should be to offer a sustainable job that people can build a life around”.

Alex Marshall, the president of the union, which represents gig-economy workers, said riders were paid little more than the legal minimum wage per hour…