A judge has ruled that New York City can move forward with raising the minimum wage for food delivery drivers to $18.
Acting Supreme Court Justice Nicholas Moyne ruled that drivers could now get a pay boost. Delivery companies Uber, Grubhub, and DoorDash have fought against the pay increase. In July, they sued New York City after the municipality ruled to implement a steep pay increase for food delivery employees. This led to a temporary injunction over the ruling. However, on Thursday, Judge Moyne decided that the city’s 65,000 delivery employees will indeed see pay increases. Uber, Grubhub, and DoorDash will now have to pay their drivers accordingly starting next year.
Most delivery workers who drive for apps are contractors, meaning they do not get health benefits or paid time off. In New York City, many immigrants who are unable to obtain traditional jobs turn to ride-share and delivery companies to make a living. However, the three delivery apps argued that a higher wage mandate would impact customers, who will likely be hit with higher prices when requesting food deliveries. Nevertheless, worker activists are pleased with the ruling.
“Multi-billion dollar companies cannot profit off the backs of immigrant workers while paying them pennies in New York City and get away with it. The judge’s ruling is another reminder that workers will always win,” Ligia Guallpa, the director of the New York-based Workers Justice Project.
The delivery apps must choose between paying workers $17.96 hourly without tips. Or, they can pay drivers $0.50 per minute of active time. They already use an active minute formula, so it’s likely they will build onto this method.
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