Why it may be hard to order a takeaway in Liverpool this Valentine's Day

Takeaway delivery drivers are striking tomorrow
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People wanting to order a takeaway Valentine's Day may have a harder time than usual as delivery riders and drivers for Uber Eats and Deliveroo, among other delivery companies, are planning to strike between 5.00pm and 10.00pm on February 14.

The strike is being organised by grassroots organisation Delivery Job UK with an estimated 3,000 delivery riders planning to strike in London and other cities across the country.

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Along with Uber Eats and Deliveroo, Just Eat and Stuart.com will also be affected as drivers and riders often work between these companies simultaneously.

The five-hour walkout aims to highlight what has been described as poor pay and working conditions riders face while delivering food and groceries across the UK.

Delivery Job UK claim that wages for delivery riders have remained unchanged for four years, despite the rising cost of inflation. The strikes follow a Supreme Court ruling from last November, which ruled that Deliveroo drivers were not legally classed as 'workers' and thus were unable to form a union.

Discussing the strike on X (formerly Twitter), 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.

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"Indeed, this has to end. These companies are losing sight of what’s reasonable. They don’t know when to cease; the abuses are continually worsening. They’ll have to learn in the worst possible way."

In a statement, Deliveroo said: "Riders always earn at least the national living wage, plus vehicle costs, for the time they are working with us, though the vast majority earn far more than this. Riders are also automatically insured for free, covering them if they are in an accident or injured while working and receive income protection if they are unwell and cannot work."

An Uber Eats spokesperson said the company offers "a flexible way for couriers to earn by using the app when and where they choose". They continued: "We know that the vast majority of couriers are satisfied with their experience on the app, and we regularly engage with couriers to look at how we can improve their experience."

According to the BBC, Stuart.com said they were "committed to providing competitive earnings opportunities for courier partners".

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A Just Eat spokesperson said: "We take the concerns of all couriers on the Just Eat network extremely seriously. Their welfare is important to us, and we welcome their feedback. Our data shows that couriers delivering for Just Eat earn, on average, significantly over both the London and national living wage for the time they are on an order."

They added: "We provide a highly competitive base rate to self-employed couriers and have a good relationship with the vast majority of couriers across our network. In addition, we offer regular incentives to help them maximise their earnings and continue to review our pay structure regularly."

Liverpool may be affected by the walkout, so people looking to enjoy a takeaway with their partners tomorrow evening may face longer waits when ordering, and should check in advance.

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