“We do not know what we’re going to win” : the disarray of Deliveroo

At the hour announced on the social networks, a few cyclists turn around the place de la République, in Paris, tee-shirt and turquoise huge backpack cubic. Worried look, they seem reluctant to stop.

How much will they be, Friday, 12 October, to dare to demonstrate against Deliveroo, the digital platform for which they deliver meals ? The deployment of a banner accusing the company of being the “champion of the world of insecurity” seems to give them courage. And suddenly, in a few minutes, they finally are forty gathered on the place. They do not know each other but greet each other a fraternal, such as the relief of no longer being alone in the galley.

Because at Deliveroo, we do not cross his colleagues at the coffee machine. These drivers are all on their own account, independent, linked to the digital platform by a service contract. Deliveroo sends them racing to perform — playing the intermediary between restaurants, deliverers and consumers — through an application on their smartphone.

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First shy, tongues loosen with the first questions. “The distances that must be traveled have exploded ! “says Hadrian, 25 years old, student in business in the book, and “delivery partner” of Deliveroo for eighteen months. When he started, all his races were in a small area in the east of Paris. “But now, it can go up to Montreuil [Seine-Saint-Denis] ! “For Hugo [at the request of the drivers, most of the names have been changed], a 22-year, full-time, the account is simple :” I could make a delivery in fifteen minutes, paid for 5.75 euros. Now, some take me thirty minutes, for the same price. ”

Substantial losses

The same price ? Not quite. Because Deliveroo comes, still, to change its tariff system. However, according to the protesters, every change is a step backwards. Thus, when John, a student in geography, has begun, two years ago, it was a fixed rate of 7.50 euros per hour plus 2 euros per race. “At the end of a year, it was necessary to change” for a fixed rate of 5.75 euros per race. In June, new formula : the driver is now 3 euros per order plus a variable amount, with a floor price set at 5.30 euros. A minimum amount lowered to 4.80 euros in September.

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“We have been baited with offers for accepting to pass the new tariff, but since it keeps dropping, take it Ali, 20 years old, delivery driver full-time. The variable portion that is opaque, we do not know what you will win ! ”

Has Deliveroo, one denies any decrease in rates. The variable rate would be, on the contrary, “a response to the request drivers” to reassert the value of long runs thanks to an algorithm taking into account distances, altitude changes, and waiting time of the order.

Most of the drivers mobilized argue, however, suffer substantial losses, of the order of € 200 to € 300 per month full time. To the extent that the premium “rainy” or “cold” would, they, rarified.

“You do not have the right to be wrong ”

As microentrepreneurs (ex-autoentrepreneurs), they have already, they remember, or paid holidays, or sick leave, or right to unemployment benefits. When Take Eat Easy, the competing company for which he was, was closed, Noah, 30 years old, has learned by a simple SMS, two hours before work. It never recover the 1 500 euros that the platform was owed to him.

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When Ali had an accident in service in 2017, he has paid only the costs of hospital and repair his scooter, and didn’t win anything for two months. At the same time, he has ” lost his good statistics “, and, therefore, his privilege to sign up for the best niche delivery. This law, which are valuable for the revenue, is only assigned to those who never cancel at the last minute, and work every Friday, Saturday and Sunday evening. “If you’re sick or that you get to steal your smartphone, you’re fucked ! “John loses his temper :” there She is, the precariousness of work, you do not have the right to be wrong ! ”

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An insecurity which is mine, all feeling at the mercy of the new changes decided unilaterally by the platform. Entered by the labour inspectorate, which sees a relationship of subordination, the parquet de Paris has recently opened a preliminary investigation against Deliveroo to work hidden, revealed Mediapart. Until now, no judgment in France has led to the reclassification of drivers as ” employees “. This is not what they want, most of them are very attached to their “freedom” and ” flexibility “. “What we want is a guarantee that the rates will not decrease. ”

“They use the social misery ”

In the late afternoon, the delivery men turned up at the headquarters of the company, but the door remained closed. “We interact continuously with our suppliers, ensures, however, a spokesman for Deliveroo. They had not warned but if they contact us, we will respond. “Not really impressed by a quarantine of drivers in the île de france. “We are working with ten thousand drivers in France and just last week, four thousand people have applied, ahead of-t-he, serene. It is a minority. “

The report of force of which the dreams of the drivers is so far to exist. “The whole world groans, but some find the enemy much too large for them,” said Jean-Daniel Zamor, president of the Collective of drivers standalone in paris, at the initiative of the gathering.

Attempt to frame the rights

“The platforms use everything they can because they see the inertia of the collective and of the public authorities “, emphasises Laëtitia Dablanc, director of research at the French Institute of science and technology for transport, development and networks, university of Paris-East, which has conducted several surveys on the drivers, the next of which will be presented on Tuesday. Modest attempt of the legislator to regulate the rights of these self-employed workers linked to digital platforms, the amendment of the law Pénicaud 2 proposed by the member (The Republic) of the Val-d’oise Aurelian Tache has been retoqué in September by the constitutional Council, for matters of form.

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“All the major european cities facing the same platforms, we can hope that they will work together on these issues, believes Laëtita Dablanc. And there was a reflection within the european Commission. “A delegation of delivery in the île de france was precisely in the United Kingdom at the beginning of October and should return soon. Those gathered Friday want to believe in a tremor of collective movement, in connection with those of London or Glasgow (Scotland). “If we convince each two people, one is a hundred next time ! “says the delivery man at the end of the gathering. Several are away by connecting their smartphone. The valuable niche of the Friday evening was going to begin.

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