Throughout the pandemic, contactless and convenient delivery apps have proven essential means of getting everything from groceries to medicine. These programs have allowed New Yorkers to get the things we need without leaving home.
However, the individuals providing this service have experienced less-than-ideal work conditions. Thankfully, new rules passed in the city could deliver critical improvements.
Access to restrooms
App-based delivery drivers in New York do not have the benefit of working in an office from a central location, meaning their access to restrooms is limited.
Before these new rules, delivery workers for companies like UberEats, Postmates and GrubHub did not have the right to use facilities at establishments where they were making a pick-up.
However, restaurants must allow app-based delivery workers to use restrooms upon request starting this month.
When people order from an app-based delivery service, some adjust their tip based on the quality of service; others set a standard amount for every transaction. Whatever the case may be, folks often assume that money will go to their delivery person.
However, this is not always the case.
App-based services vary in how they allocate tips. Some do give all tips to workers; others do not. And not all of them are transparent in sharing tip information with their workers.
The new rule requires these companies provide daily disclosures of tip amounts so delivery workers can verify they are receiving the total amount they earned.
More rules on the way
These measures are certainly a step in the right direction for protecting and properly paying delivery workers. Supporters argue that more can and should be and efforts are underway to do so.
Some measures under consideration include seeking federal funds to create rest stops. Additionally, rules will go into effect later this year that set minimum pay standards and require services to pay for workers’ insulated delivery bags.
These workers provide an essential service to New Yorkers, but they are often victims of wage or hour violations. New rules can help, but legal action can be appropriate if violations continue.