Success: Exploited Food Delivery Workers’ Rights Restored

Target: Bill DeBlasio, Mayor of New York City

Goal: Encourage and back enhanced rights for under-paid and at-risk food delivery workers.

The explosion of food delivery apps has created a hefty windfall for the powerful companies behind the services, but the benefits do not trickle down to overworked and underpaid employees who make these profits possible. In a recent survey of workers for apps like Grubhub and Uber Eats, just under half of respondents reported receiving little or even no payment for their services. One-third claimed they had been robbed while on the job, and over 50 percent had crashed. These deplorable and often dangerous conditions were encapsulated in recent stirring images of New York workers attempting to navigate flooded streets as they did their jobs in the midst of Hurricane Ida. This ForceChange petition highlighted the plight of such employees. In response to calls for action, New York City has set an important precedent by becoming the first major region to regulate the oft-criticized food delivery industry.

The broad-based legislation approved by the city council and by Mayor Bill De Blasio enhances protections for food delivery workers on many fronts. For one, employees can better ensure their safety by having more control over where and how far they travel. Wages will also experience a boost because companies will be mandated to pay workers at least once per week. In addition, companies can no longer charge their workers for equipment needed for the job or even for receiving their own wages. Tips and gratuities will not be withheld without reason as well. And one of the most undignified provisions for delivery workers has likewise met its end. Under the new rules, employees will now be allowed to use the bathrooms at facilities where they deliver food.

Sign the petition below to show support for a long-overdue effort to improve the welfare and working conditions of tens of thousands of workers.


Dear Mayor De Blasio,

Upwards of 80,000 people, many of them immigrants already experiencing extreme disadvantage, stand to benefit greatly from the broad-based legislation for food delivery app workers recently approved in New York. Every day and especially throughout the past year, these individuals risked their health, safety, and dignity to provide an important service to communities. They were underpaid, underappreciated, and were not even afforded basic bathroom breaks.

Thank you for taking the reins and addressing many of these fundamental human rights issues with decisive action and legislation that will hopefully serve as a model for towns and cities nationwide.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Norma Mortenson

One Comment

  1. Thank you for posting this. Yes there’s a lot of gig work in New York and the conditions are not ideal.

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