Riders x Derechos (Riders for Rights)

Riders x Derechos was founded by a group of food delivery riders in Spain to negotiate better working conditions with the respective platforms. 

In Spain, food delivery riders, notably those affiliated to Deliveroo, established a Facebook group ‘Riders x Derechos’ (Riders for Rights), to negotiate better working conditions with the respective platforms, including a change of the employment status from self-employed to employee. They have also set up the ‘National Association of Bike Courier Services’ (‘Asociación Nacional de Ciclomensajería’), which tries to support and offer useful information for delivery riders in regard to taxation and accident insurance.

During the summer of 2017, Riders x Derechos organised several strikes that were answered with repressions and dismissals. For example, in July 2017, under the coordination of Riders x Derechos, hundreds of Deliveroo riders went on strike in Madrid and Barcelona to demand a decent salary (at least two deliveries per hour to reduce salary uncertainty) and a minimum working time of 20 hours per week. Detailed information of this strike can be found in the following record of Deliveroo strike Spain.

In 2018, the group joined forces with Intersindical Alternativa de Catalunya (IAC), a Catalan trade union organisation with a presence in the sectors of education, health and public administrations, to demand from the labour inspectorate changes to the conditions of ‘false self-employed’ workers. The group gained media attention when in early 2019 a worker from the Glovo delivery platform died in a bike accident. Riders x Derechos and other Glovo workers claim that Glovo is not making enough efforts to guarantee the safety of its workers.

In May 2018, Riders x Derechos launched a crowdfunding campaign to support the delivery service app of Mensakas. Mensakas is a delivery cooperative established by IAC and a group of riders from Deliveroo, Glovo and Uber Eats, who also created Riders x Derechos. Mensakas aims to create dignified working conditions for riders, to provide employment contracts and to develop an ecological and sustainable delivery service. To achieve its goals and to increase international alliance with riders, Mensakas has collaborated with CoopCyle, the French cooperative which operates in another 16 European countries. More information on CoopCyle can be found here.

Meanwhile, to increase their presence in various social media platforms, the group has developed a diversified communication strategy which aims to establish alliances with riders from other platforms, as well as from other cities and countries.

In April 2019, the group organised a two-day conference named ‘My boss is not an algorithm’, which discussed issues related to the global riders’ struggle against delivery platforms, challenges faced by cooperatives in the platform economy, as well as the possible cooperation among riders at both local and international level.

Further reading:

In June 2020, Riders x Derechos promoted a manifesto in support of the claims of effective recognition of the status of false self-employed platform workers. The manifesto was signed, among others, by trade union CCOO (Trade Union Confederation of Workers' Commissions, Confederación Sindical de Comisiones Obreras), UATAE (Union of Associations of Self-employed Workers and Entrepreneurs, Unión de Asociaciones de Trabajadores Autónomos y Emprendedores), FACUA-Consumers in Action (FACUA- Consumidores en Acción), CGT (General Confederation of Labour, Confédération Générale du Travail), COAG (Coordinator of Farmers' and Stockbreeders' Organisations, Coordinadora de Organizaciones de Agricultores y Ganaderos), and Las Kellys Barcelona.

On 4 December 2020, Riders x Derechos attended a meeting with representatives of the Ministry of Labour and Agenda 2030, highlighting their position regarding Riders’ law, a new labour regulation of false self-employed workers and digital platforms. Riders x Derechos claimed that the new legislative framework governing the work of digital platform workers should include a registry of platforms and their algorithms that organise the platform work. Riders x Derechos also insisted that the regulation shall apply to all digital platforms rather than being limited to riders. This is supported by UGT (Workers’ General Union, Unión General de Trabajadores) and CCOO, which were also present at the social dialogue table. Both UGT and CCOO threatened to block the negotiation if the government does not agree with the registration of all digital platforms and their algorithms. More information of Riders’ law can be found here.

Further reading:

Metadata

  • Initiative
  • Negotiation of working conditions, Organising and representing workers
  • Spain
  • Worker
  • Yes
  • transport
  • On-location platform-determined routine work
  • Deliveroo
  • algorithm, autonomy and control, employment status, industrial action, platform cooperatives, representation, industrial relations, social dialogue, social protection
  • English, Spanish
  • 2018
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