House probe on working conditions of food delivery app riders sought
MANILA, Philippines — An inquiry on the working conditions and rights of riders for food delivery services apps is being pushed in the House of Representatives.
Under House Resolution No. 1973, the Makabayan bloc said that food and grocery delivery services have become very important especially amid the pandemic where mobility and physical access to shops and restaurants have been limited.
“Food and grocery services riders are currently considered as ‘freelancers’ thereby making them susceptible to unfair and abusive labor practices such as unjust diminution of wages and arbitrary punitive actions,” the Makabayan bloc said in the resolution.
“There is a need to ensure that delivery riders are protected from abuse and unfair labor practices,” they added.
The Makabayan bloc is composed of Bayan Muna Reps. Carlos Zarate, Ferdinand Gaite, and Eufemia Cullamat; ACT Teachers Partylist Rep. France Castro; Gabriela Women’s Party Rep. Arlene Brosas; and Kabataan Partylist Rep. Sarah Jane Elago.
A similar measure was also filed by Trade Union Congress Party Rep. Raymond Mendoza.
Under House Resolution No. 1974, Mendoza said that food delivery services platforms appear to label their riders as “independent contractors”, “business partners”, or “freelancers” to evade the payment of the mandatories required by the Labor Code and other related laws.
“Justice and fairness dictate that Congress ascertain the status of the delivery riders what are their rights, and what are the obligations of the online delivery platforms, how much the workers will earn, where and how long the riders will work, under what labor relations conditions, and what government agency or agencies will provide remedies and regulate their relations,” Mendoza said.
The issue of the working conditions of food delivery services application riders once again made the headlines after popular food delivery app Foodpanda slapped a 10-year suspension on about 30 of its riders in Davao City who were supposed to protest against the application’s wage policy.
When hundreds of riders rallied in response, another 70 who participated in the protest were suspended for 10 years.
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