Late April, over a hundred bike couriers of companies like Deliveroo and Foodora met in Berlin. They are protesting against the precarious labour conditions at the fast-growing delivery companies. Their protests are part of a European campaign of activist unions, partly inspired by a succesful strike of London couriers.
Hundreds of bike couriers work in food delivery in Berlin. Self-employed workers receive 4.75 euro per delivery; employees 9 euro per hour plus 1 euro per delivery. The conditions constantly change, and ‘generally not to the advantage of workers’.
The delivery companies are growing fast as a result of the hundreds of millions they receive from investment companies. In Berlin, this has resulted in fierce competition at the expense of workers.
The Berlin trade union FAU doesn’t want to create a works council (widespread in Germany) but create company-level groups of activists who engage in direct action - whether strikes or generating publicity. The ultimate goal is a collective agreement.