An Uber delivery rider in the Netherlands. Photo: Creative Commons Franklin Heijnen / Flickr

Unions welcome new rules on platform workers

  • March 12, 2024

The EU institutions have finally reached a political deal on the platform work directive after over two years of negotiations. The new law could improve working conditions for millions of workers employed by digital platforms, but currently classified as self-employed, such as delivery riders and drivers.

The European Trade Union Confederation welcomed the deal. Ludovic Voet, Confederal Secretary of the ETUC, said:“Today’s decision means that millions of people working through digital platforms will no longer be cheated out of the minimum wages, sick pay, holiday pay and social security.”

The deal could help reduce what the union’s call ‘bogus self-employment’ whereby platforms such as Uber Eats and Deliveroo consider their delivery riders to be self-employed, despite working, to all extents and purposes, as paid employees.

The new law will require EU Member States to introduce a ‘presumption of employment’ for platform workers. The presumption must be based on the control and direction platform companies have over riders/drivers. It will be up to platform companies to prove they’re not employees. There is also an obligation for targeted inspections.