The #Roosistence came to Leeds on Friday 10th March as around 100 people, Deliveroo workers and their supporters, held a cycle protest around Leeds city centre demanding the reinstatement of the ‘Leeds 7’.
Iain Dalton, Leeds Socialist Party
These 7 Deliveroo workers had been part of a WhatsApp group of riders discussing their terms and conditions, including a proposed change from hourly pay to payment per drop. When management gained access to this group in late January they dismissed two workers and 5 riders were left without fixed hours.
Since then, around 30 workers have unionised with the IWW locally who these workers had previously contacted for advice, and they held a protest which a number of Unite members joined after their Malmaisson protest recently.
At Friday’s protest it was announced that the pressure so far had finally forced Deliveroo to act, sacking the local manager responsible for the dismissals. However, despite this the ‘Leeds 7’ have still not been reinstated.
But there are still questions of workers conditions to be addressed. As the IWW’s leaflet points out “Deliveroo hires it’s workers on bogus self employment contracts – denying them sick pay and avoiding tax… Deliveroo over recruit – cutting hours of experienced riders and creating a race to the bottom.”
The trade union movement in Leeds must rally in defence of the Deliveroo workers and support the campaign for reinstatement and union recognition. Groups of workers like these, and those like the care workers, call centre workers and others that Socialist Party members and the Youth Fight for Jobs campaign have been helping to unionise, should be put to the forefront of the Leeds TUC May Day demonstration which is focusing on the question of fighting low pay and the demand for a £10 an hour minimum wage.
Please support the hardship fund at crowdpac.co.uk/campaigns/1303/the-leeds7