Wednesday 05 October 2022

Uber Eats, Deliveroo often use undocumented delivery workers


Meal delivery firms Uber Eats and Deliveroo are providing work for illegal immigrants who get round checks by using others’ identities or student visas, the NRC reported on Friday.

In addition, these delivery workers, who are treated as self-employed, are avoiding paying tax on their earnings on a massive scale, tax office officials told the paper.

The NRC investigated the position of self-employed delivery workers in Amsterdam, Utrecht and Nijmegen, interviewing some 60 during the process, and found many of them come from countries such as Albania, Bangladesh and Brazil.

More than half of those interviewed could not explain how they had come by a work permit, were not properly insured and did not pay tax. Many were able to use a false identity because Uber Eats and Deliveroo only have digital contact with their riders. Some paid €100 a week to use a legal courier’s account.

Government inspectors, who warned earlier this year that delivery workers often face dangerous working conditions, confirmed that ‘a reasonably large number of illegal immigrants’ work for the firms. They should ‘improve their controls of who works on an account to stop them being passed on’ to others, a spokesman said.

Deliveroo, which said earlier this year it is pulling out of the Netherlands, said it had 4,500 ‘active accounts’ from riders on its books while Uber Eats declined to give figures. Uber Eats said it had a ‘zero tolerance’ approach to fraud and is planning to introduce new technology to improve checks.

Thuisbezorgd gives its workers a formal contract.

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