Delivery drivers demand better protection

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Delivery drivers in Nicosia took to the streets to protest the death of a 26-year-old Bangladeshi who was fatally injured while riding a moped on the job.

Tens of delivery drivers employed by online delivery platforms held an impromptu protest outside the offices of trade Union PEO in Nicosia on Monday.

Neophytos Timinis, representing the union, told reporters that the protest was self-organised by the drivers but had the full backing of PEO.

At the same time, unions SEK and DEOK have also sent messages of solidarity.

Drivers demand that safety and security measures be taken seriously, with legislation introduced to regulate their working conditions, including pay and employment status.

The General Secretary of PEO’s hospitality branch, Neophytos Timinis, said that unions stand with the delivery drivers and are in contact with the Labour Ministry to resolve the issue.

SEK general secretary Charalambos Avgousti added that unions are doing everything they can to accelerate the process of providing humane working conditions for drivers.

“We are here to support them and help them by any means possible so that their work conditions become more humane”.

Amin, a representative of the delivery drivers, said they seek help from unions regarding dangerous working conditions leading to serious accidents.

Drivers argued that low pay and tight delivery time windows create pressure to take risks.

The protest comes as negotiations are being carried out to reach a collective agreement determining the relations between drivers and online platform operators in charge of dispatching deliveries.

At the end of December, hundreds of delivery drivers held a series of strikes over working conditions, gaining the attention of the Labour Ministry, which called online platforms and drivers to negotiations over collective agreements.

The 26-year-old driver from Bangladesh died in an accident in the Capital’s old town while he had been out for deliveries.