UK’s Food Delivery Drivers To Go On Strike On Valentine’s Day. Here’s Why

Couriers are demanding fair treatment for their “critical role”

Britain’s couples could struggle for Valentine’s Day gifts and meals after Amazon staff went on strike over pay Tuesday — and will soon be joined by takeaway delivery drivers, organisers said.

Disheartened workers for food apps including Deliveroo, Uber Eats and Just Eat will walk out on Wednesday.

Instagram account Delivery Jobs UK, grouping together some of the sector’s workforce, has urged meal and shopping platform couriers to strike on February 14 between 1700 GMT and 2200 GMT.

That is when the appetite for speedily-delivered Valentine’s Day evening meals is expected to surge across Britain — for those who don’t want to cook.

The GMB trade union has called a three-day strike this week at Amazon’s giant warehouse facility in Coventry, central England, spanning from Tuesday to Thursday.

This week’s walkouts come amid broader UK industrial unrest as workers’ pay fails to keep pace with elevated prices, with the latest inflation data due Wednesday.

Ulisses, a Brazilian courier who declined to give his surname for fear of reprisals, is one of the organisers of Delivery Jobs UK, which hosts 4,000 mainly foreign workers who are mostly Brazilian.

“The choice of Valentine’s Day for the strike is strategic, aimed at maximising visibility and impact,” Ulisses told AFP in an interview.

“Valentine’s Day is one of the busiest days for delivery services, with a high demand for meal deliveries.”

Wednesday’s strike also coincides with the publication of the latest official UK inflation data for January.

Couriers are demanding fair treatment for their “critical role”, particularly after they helped feed the nation during Covid pandemic lockdowns.

“By striking on this day, we aim to highlight the critical role delivery workers play in the economy and the importance of fair compensation and working conditions,” added Ulisses.

“This action is a call to both the companies and the public to recognise and address the unsustainable earnings that have become all too common in the delivery industry.”

Delivery Jobs UK’s membership also comprises UK-based delivery staff from other nations including Albania, Nigeria and Romania.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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