Valentine’s Day plans are under threat as a barrage of strikes scheduled for Wednesday could disrupt doorstep deliveries from major companies including Uber Eats, Deliveroo and Amazon.
The walkouts come as thousands of delivery drivers for the popular food and gift ordering platforms prepare to stage industrial action demanding better pay and working conditions.
Organised by grassroots group Delivery Job UK, some 3,000 drivers from Uber Eats, Just Eat, Deliveroo and last-mile logistics company Stuart will take their feet off the pedals during the peak time hours of 5pm to 10pm on Wednesday.
In a post on X, Delivery Job UK said: “This Valentine’s Day strike highlights the growing tensions between gig economy workers and the platforms they work for.
“As consumers, it’s crucial to consider the conditions under which our conveniences are delivered. #SupportGigWorkers.”
In November, the Supreme Court ruled that Deliveroo riders were not classed as ‘workers’ and therefore are unable to form a union, following a seven-year battle.
The GMB union has also announced strikes at Amazon’s Coventry warehouse on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday this week, with over 1,000 workers expected to participate.
It marks the beginning of a fresh wave of industrial action, as UK workers demand a £15 hourly wage and union rights.
GMB senior organiser, Amanda Gearing, said the campaign is “growing stronger every day”.
“Next week will mark the start of months of industrial chaos and Amazon is fast running out of options. It’s time for Amazon to listen to our members, it’s time for £15,” she added.
Employees of the retail giant voted overwhelmingly to extend strikes earlier this year, having engaged in over 30 days of industrial action so far in 2023.
An Amazon spokesperson said the firm regularly reviews its pay “to ensure we offer competitive wages and benefits.” By April, its minimum starting pay will increase to £12.30 and £13 per hour, depending on location- a 20 per cent increase over two years.
Workers in the US are also taking to the picket lines, with drivers for ride-sharing platforms like Uber, Lyft, and food delivery app DoorDash expected to join the Valentine’s Day strike.
City A.M. approached Deliveroo and Uber for comment.