EU countries back overhaul of app workers' conditions
The 27 EU member states on Monday backed plans that could force companies like Uber and Deliveroo to treat workers as employees in a potential radical overhaul of the gig economy's business model.
Talks will soon begin to prepare the law between the European Council, which represents member states, and the European Parliament, which already backed the changes in February.
The European Commission first proposed the overhaul in December 2021 but it has come under fierce criticism from delivery platforms.Currently, the EU has 28 million platform workers.
The bloc has previously said that if the legislation is passed, it would help reclassify five million platform workers in the 27 member states as fully-fledged employees.
Under the council's plans, workers will have to meet at least three of the EU's seven criteria for redesignation, forcing many companies to offer them protections under labor laws. The initial proposal said at least two of five criteria had to be met.
"The council's approach strikes a good balance between protecting workers and providing legal certainty for the platforms that employ them," Paulina Brandberg, Swedish Minister for Gender Equality and Working Life, said in a statement.
But Delivery Platform Europe, which represents Uber Eats and Deliveroo among others, remained unhappy with the draft legislation and hoped talks would lead to more changes.
"While the text approved today brings more clarity than the original proposal, it still fails to draw a clear enough line between employment and self-employment and it does little to enhance the situation of the genuinely self-employed," it said.
The new rules also demand greater transparency in how the platforms use algorithms to monitor workers and make decisions.
© 2023 AFP