From The Strait Times, Eileen Ng discusses changes to the gig economy model that are taking place around the world including the United Kingdom, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, China, the Philippines, Malaysia, and Australia. Eileen writes:
SINGAPORE – Countries around the world are starting to look into safety nets and ways to improve working conditions for gig economy workers, who are usually categorised as independent contractors or self-employed and fall outside the ambit of labour laws.
Some changes have started to take place, especially in Europe, mostly due to court rulings.
In a massive change of its business model, ride hailing giant Uber recognised some 70,000 of its drivers in Britain as “workers” from mid-March this year, granting them a minimum wage, paid leave and pension plans.Uber also announced a pact with the private hire car union GMB to represent its drivers in the United Kingdom.
The moves came after the British Supreme Court upheld a ruling that Uber’s drivers should be classified as workers rather than independent contractors.
In Spain, a legislation known as Rider’s Law mandates that food delivery platforms categorise couriers as salaried staff with rights such as collective bargaining.
Coming into effect on Aug 12, it also requires the companies to disclose how their systems work in terms of assigning jobs and assessing couriers’ performances.
This followed a Spanish Supreme Court ruling in September last year that a courier working for Spanish delivery company Glovo was an employee.