Deliveroo riders question CEO at company’s first AGM days after GMB partnership stunt

Fri, May 20, 2022, 8:21 AM
  • Deliveroo couriers from the Independent Workers’ Union of Great Britain (IWGB) will attend the food delivery giant’s first AGM today to question the board on poverty pay, dangerous working conditions, and unfair dismissals.
  • Deliveroo announced a partnership with GMB on Thursday 12 May that has been widely condemned as a ‘cynical PR move’ in a desperate attempt to stop shares falling further, after last year’s disastrous IPO.

Friday 20 May: Today, 10 Deliveroo couriers and union representatives from the IWGB will be in attendance at Deliveroo’s first AGM to question CEO Will Shu and other board members on the company’s exploitative employment practices. Questions will focus on sub minimum wage pay, worker rights, and last week’s backroom GMB partnership agreement.

Last week, Deliveroo announced a partnership agreement with GMB - a union with no history of organising Deliveroo couriers - which has been widely dismissed as a PR move to stop shares falling further, after concerns around workers' rights led to Deliveroo’s initial public offering being dubbed ‘the worst in London’s history’ in March last year. The agreement was announced without consulting riders and maintains couriers’ legal status as ‘independent contractors’, therefore failing to address unpaid waiting times and the lack of basic worker rights such as pensions and holiday pay.

The delivery giant is under significant international pressure from regulators seeking to clamp down on employment misclassification. Last year, the IWGB applied to appeal a collective bargaining case to the Supreme Court.

The attendance of couriers at today’s AGM has been jointly co-ordinated by IWGB and ShareAction, a charity that campaigns for responsible investment.

Ahmed Uhuru Hafezi, Deliveroo Courier, says: "Last year I stood with my fellow riders on the day of Deliveroo's IPO to protest against the company's exploitative business model that puts us workers last. A year later, this model remains unchanged. I'm going to the AGM to make sure Deliveroo are held accountable not just to shareholders, but to the workers who make their business run."

Joe Durbidge, Deliveroo Courier, says: “I’ve worked for Deliveroo for over three years and it has become increasingly unclear how our pay is determined, all that we can be sure of is that it continues to come down. Frequent over hiring and rising costs cut into our income further. These are the things that matter for us and I'm going to the AGM to ask Deliveroo directly how they intend to improve for riders."

Rachel Hargreaves, Senior Project Officer at ShareAction, says: “Last year many investors abstained from investing in Deliveroo over concerns about worker’s rights. However, this year, there is a surprising absence of investor engagement on Deliveroo’s harmful workforce practices, which makes it all the more important that riders are using the opportunity of the AGM to raise these critical issues directly with the board.”

For more information, please contact:

James Vail, Head of Communications, IWGB

Conor Quinn, Media Communications Manager, ShareAction

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