Deliveroo drivers protest working conditions at London AGM

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

Deliveroo drivers protest working conditions at London AGM

Related tags Deliveroo Delivery & takeaway delivery Protest Wages

Deliveroo drivers have staged a protest outside the company's annual general meeting (AGM) in London over working conditions described by one rider as ‘soul destroying’.

As reported by The Standard​, dozens of members of the Brazilian, Bengali, Romanian and British rider communities arrived for a demonstration outside the offices of White & Case law firm in London on Thursday (23 May) as the AGM took place inside.

Protesters allege that Deliveroo has repeatedly failed to engage with them over poor pay and job security as they face growing financial difficulties.

However, Deliveroo has claimed that the ‘overwhelming majority of riders’ working for the company are ‘satisfied’.

Riders for food delivery platforms are generally classified as self-employed contractors, meaning their employers are not legally obliged to pay them the statutory National Living Wage, although many of the platforms claim that their riders' pay always meets the threshold.

Deliveroo, which signed a union recognition deal with GMB back in 2022​, reportedly agreed recently to increase the guaranteed minimum pay for the periods when drivers are on an order to £12 an hour, plus vehicle costs, above the £11.44 hourly rate required.

However, protester Matthew Toun, who has been a Deliveroo driver for more than five years, told The Standard​ that pay will still work out as less than £12 an hour because drivers often take longer to carry out a delivery than Deliveroo estimates due to factors like waiting times at restaurants or traffic.

He said: “We have seen a steady real-term decrease (in pay) year on year.

“Our labour is being bid on every day to the lowest paying rider to take that order. But you have no choice. It’s soul-destroying.”

During the AGM, Deliveroo chief executive Will Shu and the board were confronted by driver representatives supported by responsible investment charity ShareAction and the Independent Workers Union of Great Britain (IWGB).

Union representatives subsequently said most of the queries put forward were met with ‘bog-standard’ answers.

This latest action follows a series of protests earlier this year​ that saw drivers for food delivery platforms including Deliveroo, Just Eat and Uber Eats strike in a dispute over pay.

Responding to Thursday’s events, a Deliveroo spokesperson said: “We value dialogue with riders and were grateful to the riders who attended and shared their experiences and questions with the Board today, as well as those who stayed after the meeting to share their feedback with our team.

“Deliveroo offers the flexible work riders tell us they want alongside attractive earning opportunities and protections, including free insurance, sickness cover, financial support when riders become new parents and a range of training opportunities.

“Rider retention and application rates are high and the overwhelming majority of riders tell us that they are satisfied working with us.”

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