UberEats & Deliveroo to join strikes in food sector

Riders for Deliveroo and Uber Eats will be joining employees from JD Wetherspoon (LON: JDW), McDonald’s (NYSE: MCD) and TGI Fridays (OTCMKTS: TGIFF) in strikes over a pay dispute.

Walkouts are taking place on Thursday in several UK cities, including a rally in London,  which is highlighting issues surrounding “poverty pay” and insecure employment. 

Having recently reduced its minimum payment per delivery from £4.26 to £3.50, UberEats employees are joining strikes with hopes to be paid £5 per delivery and a further £1 per mile for each delivery.

Uber has defended the pay scheme for its riders.

The firm said in a statement: “Last week couriers using our app in cities across the UK took home an average of £9-10 per hour during mealtimes, with many also using other delivery apps.”

JD Wetherspoon, McDonald’s and TGI Fridays employees will be on strike for increased wages to £10 per hour and union recognition.

“The fact that UberEats drivers have decided to strike on the same day as us shows that low pay is an issue that affects people across the industry,” said a spokesman from the Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union (BFAWU).

A McDonald’s spokesperson said the company was “disappointed” to hear about the strikes planned for Thursday.

“All restaurants remain open as usual today despite frustrating attempts by protestors at a handful of locations to [have an] impact [on] our customers, and our restaurant teams,” said a spokesperson.

A spokesperson from JD Wetherspoons has said that it had increased the total amount it paid staff by £20 million in the past year and that it will not increase wages further. 

“It is understandable that there is pressure on pay with low unemployment and a housing shortage,” said Tim Martin, the group’s boss.

“However, bonuses, free shares and other benefits should be taken into account in assessing pay,” he added.