Livable Wages

Every job deserves a living wage no matter what it is. If you’re giving a company your time, you should be making enough money to pay your bills, put food on your table and take care of your family.

In contrast to what apps say, gig work is a full time job for many workers and not “just a side hustle.” App employers maintain this perception to keep wages low and avoid responsibility to the workers.

As a gig worker you’re expected to pay for everything from all season work clothing to gas/car insurance, and a safety net of savings for when you get hurt at work. It often means when you don’t get enough orders, you are losing money. That’s not a way to build a life.

For all their big talk, the greatest innovation of app employers is finding ways to continually extract the most out of workers, paying them as little as possible.

Advocating alone we feel small but together our voices are louder than their influence. As Gig Workers United, we can — and will — make this industry what it could be: a decent job with decent pay for all workers.

Workers’ Rights

You are entitled to work in a job where the conditions of your contract are clearly outlined and easy to understand. App employers frequently impose new contracts on workers without any notice, often locking us out from going online until a new contract is accepted. Being forced to accept a constantly changing contract for less pay, under the threat of losing your job, is not acceptable. Being paid less for a delivery than what was quoted to you when you accepted the order is not acceptable. It’s nothing short of wage theft. You have limited options for resolving problems with your accounts and your work conditions are purposefully unclear.

These are labour rights violations. App-based employers act this way because they have been allowed to misclassify you as a worker who isn’t entitled to rights. We know that everyone who does the hard, dirty, vital work that we do, deserves to thrive. We deserve labour protections, paid breaks, the right to unionize, and recourse for wrongful dismissal and wage theft. Collective action means uniting all workers together to demand, and win, the rights that we should be entitled to - for ourselves and for our fellow gig workers.

Health and Safety

Your job is dangerous. We do our best to stay safe but ask any bike courier; they’ll tell you how many times they’ve been hit by a car door, gotten pinched when a driver turned left around them unsafely, or fallen on streetcar tracks. Delivering in a car isn’t free from risk either; drivers are injured in collisions or suffering from repetitive motion injuries, and the pressure to not disclose that they’re working due to insufficient insurance protections is overwhelming. All workers face the risks of hazardous weather but this is also the best opportunity to earn income

For women and racialized people the violence of discrimination and misogyny are real factors in the way road users treat us. Gendered insults while using roads, racial slurs when making turns or pulling into parking spaces; these are unacceptable realities of our lives. Working together we can fight the dehumanizing treatment we experience on the job.

When you do your best to take precautions to work safely, you get penalized by app employers for not meeting unrealistic deadlines. You’re expected to take new orders while focusing on operating a vehicle, breaking the law and risking your life. At any moment you can be taken offline and lose out on orders because you didn't answer the app while driving in traffic.

When you get injured you’re stuck paying for your treatments. This leads many of you to going back to work before you should, or suffering with permanent health issues because you don’t have benefits. When you need time off in the form of sick days, family leave, or vacation, it’s unpaid. Many choose not to take time off, and to go to work injured or sick, which makes them prime vectors for the spread of viruses.

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