City Sprint courier wins labour rights case

Lots of people who deliver ecommerce parcels for couriers do it on a price basis with a bounty paid per delivery. That means that they are classed as self-employed and don’t enjoy many of the rights an employed person is entitled to. It also means that multiple attempts at delivery, non-delivery and other problems are detrimental to delivery worker’s income.

It’s termed as the ‘gig economy’ and it includes people who work for companies like Uber and Deliveroo.

But one courier cyclist for City Sprint, Maggie Dewhurst, has challenged this ‘gig economy’ approach and won a tribunal hearing that says she is entitled to holiday and sick pay. The company plans to appeal the ruling.

City Sprint says: “This case has demonstrated that there is still widespread confusion regarding this area of law, which is why we are calling on the government to provide better support and help for businesses across the UK who could be similarly affected.”

It will be interesting to see what happens here because increasingly people are working in the ‘gig economy’. And courier companies, not just City Sprint, rely on these employment practices.

And it seems likely that if the freelance deliverers become seen as staff, with holiday and sick pay rights, then costs will increase and that will hit sellers and consumers. Watch this space.