Thousands of UK Deliveroo, Just Eat, and Uber Eats drivers to strike on Valentine's Day

Thousands of delivery riders are due to walk out over pay and conditions. Credit: PA

Thousands of delivery drivers for food-ordering platforms, including Deliveroo, Just Eat, and Uber Eats, are staging a Valentine's Day strike, demanding better pay and conditions.

Delivery Job UK has organised the Valentine's Day industrial action, claiming to have more than 3,000 members prepared to down tools in London alone.

The grassroots organisation hopes to focus attention on low pay and insecure conditions faced by drivers.

Due to app-based delivery drivers being designated as self-employed contractors, they are not legally entitled to the national living wage of £10.42 and hour - which is due to increase to £11.44 in April.

Writing on X, Delivery Job UK said: "This Valentine's Day strike highlights the growing tensions between gig economy workers and the platforms they work for.

"As consumers, it's crucial to consider the conditions under which our conveniences are delivered.

"Let's stand in solidarity with those fighting for fair wages and better working conditions. It's more than just a meal at stake - it's about the dignity and rights of every worker."

The mooted strike action comes after a court ruling that riders cannot be classed as "workers" and do not have the ability to form a union.

In November, the Independent Worker's Union of Great Britain said: "The Supreme Court’s ruling comes as a disappointment after years spent fighting a legal battle to secure riders’ bare minimum employment rights.

"As a union we cannot accept that thousands of riders should be working without key protections like the right to collective bargaining, and we will continue to make that case using all avenues available to us, including considering our options under international law."

The strike action also comes as Deliveroo launched a partnership with Ann Summers at the beginning of February in the run up to Valentine's Day - with consumers able to get products from the lingerie and sex toys vendor delivered to their home.

A Deliveroo spokesperson said: "Deliveroo aims to provide riders with the flexible work riders tell us they value, attractive earning opportunities and protections.

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

"We value dialogue with riders, which is why we have a voluntary partnership agreement with a trade union, which includes annual discussions on pay.

"We are pleased to also be able to offer riders free insurance, sickness cover, financial support when riders become new parents and a range of training opportunities.” 

A Just Eat spokesperson added: “We take the concerns of all couriers on the Just Eat network extremely seriously. Their welfare is important to us, and we welcome their feedback.

“Our data shows that couriers delivering for Just Eat earn, on average, significantly over both the London and national living wage for the time they are on an order.

“We provide a highly competitive base rate to self-employed couriers and have a good relationship with the vast majority of couriers across our network.

"In addition, we offer regular incentives to help them maximise their earnings and continue to review our pay structure regularly.”

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