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Scott Morrison must intervene in Australia's food delivery "hunger games"



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TONY SHELDON

SENATOR FOR NEW SOUTH WALES

SCOTT MORRISON MUST INTERVENE IN AUSTRALIA’S FOOD DELIVERY

“HUNGER GAMES”

If the Morrison Government is serious about wage theft, it will intervene in an

important worker exploitation case being launched tomorrow against food

delivery company Deliveroo, said Senator for New South Wales, Tony Sheldon.

“Instead of this Orwellian “Ensuring Integrity Bill” which is an attack on workers’

representatives, we need an “Ensuring Company Integrity Bill” to fight blatant

wage and super theft in this country.”

“Food delivery in Australia is like a digital “Hunger Games” where workers are

increasingly pitted against an algorithm that monitors and controls their every

move and which punishes them if they get injured or don’t agree to work on

demand,” Senator Sheldon said.

“We are talking about ordinary Australians who just want a fair day’s work for a

fair day’s pay - when will Scott Morrison stand up for these “quiet Australians”?”

Senator Sheldon was speaking ahead of a case launched today by a Deliveroo

rider from Canberra, Jeremy Rhind, who at the time of his employment was paid

just over $10 per hour and who has taken his case to the Federal District Court.

This case follows the successful action that the Transport Workers Union

brought against Foodora last year when the company admitted to underpaying

its delivery riders by nearly $2.3 million.

It also follows recent examples of deaths and serious injury of delivery drivers

who have not received worker’s compensation because Governments have

refused to pursue rights for gig workers.

Workers like Javiera Morgardo, an Uber Eats cyclist who was hit by a driver

who fled the scene in March this year, and who suffered severe spinal injuries

and spent a week in a Perth hospital.

“Just as our Government and regulators failed to protect people against

predatory banks, this Government, the Australian Tax Office, the Fair Work

Ombudsman and Safe Work Australia are failing in their duty to stand up for

people denied fair pay, denied superannuation and denied proper compensation

for injury in one of Australia’s most dangerous jobs.”

Senator Sheldon said the Fair Work Ombudsman was using old precedents

when it found that employment platforms like Uber and Deliveroo did not have

“control” over workers and therefore they were not employees and can be

denied fair pay, superannuation and worker’s compensation.

“This rider is bravely standing up against a large corporation exploiting people -

it is a disgrace that the Morrison Government won’t back him in. In the

meantime, Deliveroo have dropped their rates again, to $6 per delivery.”

WEDNESDAY, 28 AUGUST 2019

MEDIA CONTACT: KATH CUMMINS 0422 366 037